April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month

Close-up of happy smiling dental care woman visiting dentistOral Cancer Facts

48,250 Americans will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year alone.

Worldwide the problem is much greater, with new cases exceeding 640,000 annually.

The fastest growing segment of the oral/oropharyngeal cancer population, are HPV16+ young non-smokers.

Tobacco use in all of it’s forms and alcohol are still major risk factors for oral cancer.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Red and/or white discolorations of the soft tissue of the mouth
  • Any sore which does not heal within 14 days
  • Hoarseness which lasts for a prolonged period of time
  • A sensation that something is stuck in your throat when swallowing
  • Unexplained numbness in the mouth
  • Ear pain that occurs on one side only
  • A sore under a denture, which even after adjustment of the denture, still does not heal
  • A lump or thickening that develops in the mouth or on the neck

Your dentist can be a first line of defense in detecting abnormalities in the mouth, which could be signs of oral cancer. Many people don’t realize that oral cancer screenings are a routine part of an extensive exam performed during your dental visit. So make sure to visit the dentist regularly, get checked and stay a step ahead of oral cancer. Early detection saves lives!

To learn more, please visit www.oralcancer.org

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