Cancer is a word that no one wants to hear. Millions of people die from this disease each year, and even more must endure months of treatment and disruptions in their lives. Early diagnosis and intervention of cancer is the best way to promote optimal results from treatment. Oral cancer is no exception, and understanding the warning signs of oral cancer can help you be aware of any concerns that prevent themselves so that you can receive early intervention.
There is a significantly high death rate in those who are diagnosed with oral cancer. It is estimated that at least 50% of people who are diagnosed will pass away within five years. This is an alarming rate, yet it is mostly due to the fact that oral cancer is often discovered late. It is no secret that the most common cause of oral cancer is tobacco usage. It is also no secret that those who use tobacco are less likely to visit the dentist on a regular basis. This combination is what makes oral cancer so deadly.
Knowing the warning signs of oral cancer can help you sustain your health and your life. If you notice any of the following signs or symptoms, it is vital that you call your dentist for an immediate appointment:
- A sore in the mouth that does not heal
- A sore in the mouth that bleeds easily
- White spots or patches on the gums, tongue, or any oral tissues
- Bleeding inside your mouth
- Tenderness, pain, or numbness in the mouth or lips that does not go away
- A lump or thickening on the cheek or neck
- A thick, rough, or “crusty” spot in the mouth
- Difficulty chewing, swallowing, or speaking
- A change in your voice that is not due to a cold or allergies
- A persistent ear ache
Tobacco and alcohol use are the most common causes of oral cancer. Avoiding tobacco in all forms and limiting your consumption of alcohol will greatly reduce your risk of oral cancer. If you continue to smoke and drink alcohol, it is important that you know and pay attention to the warning signs of oral cancer so that you can protect your health. Call Family & Cosmetic Dental Care right away if you have any concerns.
Posted by Mitul Patel DDS, Family & Cosmetic Dental Care
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Suwanee, GA 30024
Phone: (770) 888-3384