Mouth Cancer, or oral cancer, is a commonly ignored disease that The American Cancer Association estimates will plague roughly 51,540 people in 2018. About 1/5 of those cases will be fatal, which is why it is important to understand the symptoms so you can receive treatment early.
At My Dentist, we understand the importance of information and value transparency with our patients. To keep you safe throughout the new year, learn more about how you can prevent this disease.
What is Oral Cancer?
No matter what kind of cancer you have, the cause is the same; cells divided uncontrollably and spread throughout various tissues forming growths. Oral cancer develops in:
- Floor of the mouth
- Roof of the mouth
- Inner lining of the cheeks
Signs of Oral Cancer
If you believe you are suffering from oral cancer, the only sure-fire way to know is to see a medical professional. If you notice the following changes, it is time to reach out to your doctor:
- Changes in speech, including lisp
- Prolonged ulcers that linger for more than three weeks
- Looseness of teeth
- Unusual swelling, bumps, or lumps in or around your mouth, neck, and head
Preventing Oral Cancer
There are several preventative measures you can take to reduce your chances of developing this disease:
- Refrain from smoking cigarettes and reduce your alcohol intake.
- If you are a female, receive the HPV vaccination, Gardasil.
- Live a healthy lifestyle. Eat a well-balanced diet of fruits and veggies, stray away from second hand smoke, and make sure to exercise.
- Visit your dentist at least twice a year for a checkup and professional cleaning.
Schedule Your Appointment for 2019
Oral cancer can be a sneaky disease, but if you take the time to see a dental professional every few months, your chances of early detection are likely! Contact us today to book your next appointment.