Oral cancer starts in the cells of the mouth. A cancerous (malignant) tumor is a group of cancer cells that can grow into and destroy nearby tissue. It can also spread (metastasize) to other parts of the body. The most common place oral cancer spreads is the lymph nodes in the neck. Oral cancer may also be called oral cavity cancer or mouth cancer. Dental professionals play a crucial role in detecting early signs of oral cancer. While some people think it is rare cancer, mouth cancers will be newly diagnosed in about 145 new individuals each day in the U. S. alone, and a person dies from oral cancer every hour of every day. The faster-growing segment of the oral/oropharyngeal cancer population comes from HPV16, a virus that goes unnoticed with no precancerous signs. Oral cancer occurs in men 2 to 1 over women. The problem is much more significant worldwide, with new cases exceeding 640,000 annually.
Early detection of cancer always has a better prognosis in its treatment outcome. Don’t turn into a statistic! At Advanced Dental Center in Norwalk, CT, we always screen and check for signs of oral cancer as part of your regular check-up. We take checking for oral cancer seriously and educate all our patients about its signs and symptoms, so it’s discovered in the early stages. Catching cancer in the earliest stage possible is the best way to increase the survival rate. Unfortunately, oral cancer can often go undiagnosed without frequent visits to the dentist. That’s why it’s not only essential to visit the dentist regularly but to pay attention to the symptoms.
Oral Cancer Symptoms:
A mouth or lip sore that doesn’t heal
A red or white patch inside your mouth
Lump or growth inside of your mouth
Difficulty or pain when swallowing
Numbness in the chin and lower lip
Dramatic voice changes
Have you had your oral cancer screening?
Remember to visit your dentist for regular checkups, eat healthily, and clean your mouth regularly. Ask your hygienist for more information at your next appointment. Also, don’t forget about tooth brushing and mouth rinsing, avoid smoking, and reduce alcohol intake. Routine dental care is essential for oral health and excellent prevention and detection tool for many other areas of your overall health!