Most people can open their mouth 35 to 55 millimetres. This is about the width of three fingers.
Surgery or radiation therapy in the head and neck area can cause difficulties in jaw opening. A reduced jaw opening is also known as trismus.
When you are not able to open your mouth wide, it can be hard to:
Below are some exercises you can do to prevent development of trismus. Even when you do not have trismus, you should do these to prevent difficulties. Once trismus develops, it can be very hard to treat.
You should aim to do these exercises 5 times a day.
If you have had surgery, please check with your doctor or therapist before starting these exercises.
If these exercises cause pain or numbness, stop doing them immediately and inform your doctor or therapist.