Here, at Southern Family Dental, we take Mouth Cancer Awareness seriously. During dental check ups, we conduct a head and neck exam to screen for signs of oral cancer. We visually inspect the mouth, jaw, and neck. Catching this early can make a huge difference in the treatment and recovery of a patient.
We wanted to offer you a few tips on how to reduce AND increase your risks of mouth cancer, as well as symptoms, so you can be aware!
Ways to reduce your risk of mouth cancer:
Schedule regular dental visits. When you get your regular check ups, your oral hygiene will improve, but it is also a chance for your dentist to catch suspicious changes in your oral health early.
Avoid using tobacco. Cigarettes and chewing tobacco both expose your mouth to chemicals that can increase your risk of getting mouth cancer.
Monitor your alcohol intake. Regular and excessive intake of alcohol can also increase your risk or oral cancer by changing the way the body can react to cancerous cells.
Protect your lips from the sun. Avoid getting too much direct sun to your lips, especially between the hours 10am-2pm since this is when the sun is at it’s peak. You can do this by using a hat, applying sunscreen, or staying in the shade.
Eat Healthy. Eating lots of fruits and veggies can contribute to a strong immune system that can fight off cancerous cells.
Usual Mouth Cancer Symptoms: Early detection of oral cancer means it often can be treated more easily. If you find any of the following symptoms change in your health, please reach out to your dentist.
A sore that won’t go away
White or reddish patch inside of your mouth
A lingering lump/rough spot around the mouth
Difficult or painful swallowing
Any significant change in your oral health – unexplained bleeding, numbness, pain, difficulty swallowing, loose teeth
Pay attention to signs and symptoms of oral cancer between appointments, and call us if you experience lingering sores or irritations, red or white patches, or lumps, or rough spots in and around the mouth.
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