In the past two decades, both in government and private practice, it’s not an uncommon scenario to get a patient with the typical complaints of burning sensation in the mouth, and difficulty in opening the mouth. The dentist with a thorough detailed history taking and clinical examination of the patient can and will nail the diagnosis as OSMF- Oral Submucous Fibrosis efficiently/effectively.
The causative agent of OSMF is not limited to a particular single factor, but a variety of causes like
➛ Areca/betel nut related chewing habits (pan, maava, gutkha)
➛ Tobacco usage
➛ Chillies, and spicy foods
➛ Nutritional deficiencies- vitamins and minerals
➛ Immunologic disorders
➛ Collagen disorders
➛ Collagen disorders
OSMF can occur at any age, but the commonly affected age group ranges from 16 to 35 years.
Male to Female ratio varies in different studies, but strongly associated with the chewing of etiological factors.
OSMF is seen predominantly in Asian countries India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Srilanka being more common in India. In the last ten years, the occurrence rate is more marked, owing to the marketing popularity of areca/betel related products. This habit is more common among drivers, to be in alert stage..➛ Progressive inability to open the mouth
The presence of palpable fibrous band is a definite indication or diagnostic criterion for submucosa fibrosis. In addition to that a positive and correlate history of pan related chewing and the association of trismus inability or difficulty in opening the mouth will establish a positive diagnosis of OSMF.
OSMF is strongly associated with a risk of oral cancer and the rate of transformation of malignancy varies from 3% to 19%.
Nutritional Enhancement :
A steep increase in the usage of pan, gutkha, masala combined with diet alteration enhance the incidence of OSMF in the recent decades. Very often we encounter such patients in clinic itself shows the incident rate. Though the government has taken measures in the recent years to create awareness of these products, the usage of these products has decreased in drastic manner. Thus areca nut related pan, maava, gutkha, betel, tobacco chewing possess a great potential danger to the society. Hope this article helps in creating awareness among public and motivates them to get an early intervention and treatments.