Risks of Oral Cancer
Why is it so important to get regular oral cancer screenings? Oral cancer can lead to debilitating pain and discomfort. It can also spread to other areas of the body, including your lymph nodes, jaw, chest, or lungs. If caught in the early stages, oral cancer can usually be treated and eliminated. As much as 90% of oral cancer cases can be handled with early detection. By allowing your dentist to conduct routine screenings, you’re protecting your oral health as well as your overall well-being.
Signs of Oral Cancer
There are many symptoms that can indicate the presence of oral cancer, which makes it essential to contact your dentist if you notice any of the following:
- Persistent pain in the mouth
- White or red patches
- Difficulty swallowing, chewing or speaking
- Sensitivity in the mouth, jaw, or neck
- Pain in the ears
- Sores in the mouth
- Unexplained sore throat, hoarseness, or cough
- Changes in texture on the interior of your mouth, lips, tongue, and gums
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms for a period of time longer than two weeks, it’s paramount to call our office right away. Early detection is key to treating oral cancer.
How to Prevent Oral Cancer
While it may not be possible to prevent oral cancer, there are several steps you can take to reduce your risk of developing the condition. One of the best ways to ward off the growth of oral cancer is to omit the use of tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, and especially chewing tobacco. Excessive alcohol consumption can also contribute to a higher risk of oral cancer. In addition to avoiding tobacco and alcohol, it’s also best to eat a well-balanced diet that contains all of the necessary vitamins and minerals your body needs to function at an optimal level. You can also protect your oral health by maintaining a regular dental routine – be sure to brush your teeth at least twice a day with an ADA-approved toothpaste, and floss at least once a day. It’s essential to visit your dentist at least twice a year for professional teeth cleanings and check-ups to ensure that your smile is in great shape.
Schedule an Oral Cancer Screening
Catch any hazards to your dental health in their early stages with our professional oral cancer screenings at Gilbert Dental Group in Greenville, South Carolina. For more information on our oral health services or to schedule an appointment online or send us a message here.