Oral Cancer: Early Detection Improves Treatment

Early Detection of Oral Cancer Can Improve Treatment Success

Oral Cancer: Early Detection Improves Treatment

Going to the dentist regularly not only protects your oral health, but it can also help detect early symptoms of oral cancer.

Like other cancers, early detection increases the chances for successful treatment.

More than 50,000 people are diagnosed with oral cancer each year. The disease affects twice as many men as women.

It all makes a strong case for seeing your dentist regularly.

Did you know that when you have a dental exam at Forest Ridge Dentistry, your dentist checks for suspicious symptoms? A dentist is often the first person to recognize the early signs of oral cancer.

This April, which is Oral Cancer Awareness Month, make sure you’re on track with your regular dental visits and cleanings. If you’re overdue for a check-up, give us a call to set up an appointment.

Here are nine possible signs and symptoms of oral cancer:

  • Any type of lump or thickening you can feel on your lips, gums or in the mouth.
  • A sore that does not heal.
  • White or red patch inside the mouth.
  • Any bleeding, pain or numbness in the mouth or lips.
  • A change in your voice.
  • Swollen jaw.
  • Sore throat or feeling that something is in your throat.
  • Difficulty swallowing, chewing or moving the tongue or jaw.
  • Loose teeth.

Certain lifestyle habits can increase the risk of oral cancer. Using tobacco products, drinking alcohol and indoor tanning are known risk factors for oral cancer.

And, if you partake in both smoking and drinking, your risk for oral cancer increases significantly.

Here’s something else to consider – roughly 25 percent of the people who get oral cancer don’t do any of these things. Additionally, while oral cancer mostly affects people who are over the age of 40, the percentage of younger people diagnosed has been increasing.

Whenever you have a concern about your oral health, talk to your dentist. A simple exam may explain the symptoms you’re experiencing and put your mind at ease.

Make an appointment today at Forest Ridge Dental in Cameron Park. Call (530) 676-9999. We are conveniently located just 5 minutes from El Dorado Hills and less than 15 minutes from Placerville.

Sources: National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute, and Oral Cancer Foundation