This year 51,000 people will be diagnosed with mouth cancer, which is often beatable when caught early. If detected in time, nine out of ten people diagnosed with early stage mouth cancer survive. Unfortunately, many cases of mouth cancer are not diagnosed until it’s too late. This November, keep in mind how important it is to attend your regular preventative care dental appointments and make sure your oral health is in good shape. Consistent checkups, cleanings, and hygiene practices are important for both health and quality of life.
Oral cancer rates have grown by 33% over the past decade and are projected to continue growing in the coming years. Tobacco is the main reason for oral cancer, followed by drinking in excess, and maintaining a poor diet. Human papillomavirus (HPV) has also been linked to oral cancer which coincides with the fact that HPV rates are on the rise.
Too much sun exposure on your lips can also lead to cancer, but the danger can be easily lessened by applying lip balm containing SPF.
- Some oral cancer symptoms include:
- A lump in your cheek
- Difficulty chewing
- Constant halitosis (bad breath)
- Sudden weight loss
- Swelling in neck
- Pain in the ear, mouth, or face
- Sores that do not disappear after three weeks
- Unusual red or white patches
You can reduce your chances of being diagnosed with oral cancer by eating a well-balanced and nutritious diet containing lots of vegetables, not smoking, drinking in moderation if at all, brushing your teeth twice daily, practicing daily good dental hygiene, and keeping your preventative care appointments least every six months.
We perform an oral cancer screening as part of every routine preventative care appointment. Request an appointment today.