Everyone has a Cancer Story
The more we know, the better we become at taking healthy measures towards fighting and preventing disease
Though cancer can be an uncomfortable topic of conversation, it is nevertheless a very real issue that should be addressed with your health and well being in mind. There is not one of us who has not been affected by cancer. Everyone has witnessed the diagnosis of a member of his or her family, a friend, an acquaintance or has been diagnosed his or herself. Everyone has a cancer story— a way in which a horrible disease left a mark on their life forever.
Because of this, it is crucial to stay educated, know the signs and take healthy measures to receive an early diagnosis if not prevent disease altogether. In this post, we’re going to talk about Oral Cancer—the what and who behind this type of cancer that often goes undetected but is just as serious as the others. Next week, we will discuss oral cancer screenings. Until then, if you are interested in a screening checkup, or another service provided by Lake Cities Dental, please make an appointment with Dr. Moore today!
Oral Cancer | What
More than the mouth | Oral cancer may affect the tongue, palate, throat, cheeks and lips
In their article, "Oral Cancer”, WebMD describes the appearance of oral cancer as a chronic sore or growth in the mouth. However, oral cancer can often go unseen and also includes cancers of the tongue, palate, pharynx or throat, cheeks and lips. Symptoms of oral cancer may include but are not limited to:
- Dramatic Weight loss
- A Chronic sore throat, voice change or hoarseness
- Mysterious bleeding in mouth
- Difficulty chewing, swallowing or speaking
- Mysterious pain or loss of feeling in face or neck
- Ear pain
- Swelling, bumps, rough places or eroded areas in mouth or no lips and gums
- White, red or speckled patches inside mouth
- Chronic mouth, face or neck sores that do not heal after two weeks
The experts at WebMD urge you to contact your dentist immediately if you notice any of the above changes and symptoms.
Oral Cancer | Who
Some factors may increase the risk of developing oral cancer
WebMD reports that over 40,000 Americans were diagnosed with Oral Cancer just last year. Of those who will develop oral cancer, they say men are twice as at risk as women, and men over the age of fifty are at an even greater risk. According to WebMD, some factors that may heighten the risk of developing oral cancer are:
- Smokeless tobacco
- Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Excessive Sun Exposure
- A family history of cancer
Oral Cancer is a serious disease that often goes undetected. Being informed is the first step to attaining a happier, healthier life, so please come back next week when we will talk about how oral cancer screenings and regular dental checkups may save your life. Lake Cities Dental cares deeply about their patients, and though they cannot take cancer stories away, they administer Oral Cancer Screening so future stories might include an early diagnosis -- a greater chance of a happy ending.