Roughly 42,000 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer in a given year and 8,000 will die from the disease. While most do not necessarily think about it, it is a preventable disease that mainly affects tobacco and alcohol users. It can also affect those that have ever been exposed to the human papilloma virus or HPV.
Oral cancer is stealthy and can typically start too small to recognize immediately. Oral cancer tends to show itself as very small red or white areas within the mouth. However, it can be overlooked very easily and only realized when it has spread to another part of the body. This disease is only found within the soft tissue of the mouth or lips but when it is detected early the chance of survival is 80 to 90 percent.
Look for the following warning signs and consult your dentist should you have any concerns with:
- The way your teeth fit or feel in your mouth.
- Pain, numbness, or tenderness within your mouth or lips.
- Noticeable difficulty moving your jaw, tongue, speaking, swallowing or chewing.
- Any color change to any area within your mouth.
- A sore that bleeds constantly or does not heal.
- A lump, rough spot, eroded area, thickening or crusting within your mouth.
The best preventable measure is to eliminate alcohol and tobacco. Maintaining great oral care at home and by maintaining regular scheduled dental visits is also beneficial to finding and treating oral cancer for those who inherit this devastating disease.
Lake Cities Dental, 1101 East State Highway 114, Suite 104, Southlake, TX 76092 / Call: (817)410-7373 / Website: https://lakecitiesdental.com / Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LakeCitiesDental / Twitter: @Lake_Cities