Oral Cancer Awareness Month is celebrated every April and serves as a stern reminder about the dangers of tongue, lip, esophageal, cheek and gum cancer.
While every day should be a reminder about the dangers of oral cancer it’s important to remember what can happen if you don’t schedule regular comprehensive dental examinations.
The team from Bela Family Dentistry can’t stress how vital comprehensive dental checkups with oral cancer screenings are.
Catch it Early
Oral cancer has a high cure rate as long as it is detected in its early stages. In fact, 80 to 90 percent of people who are diagnosed with oral cancer in the early stages go into remission or are cured completely.
How to Detect Oral Cancer
While it is impossible to detect oral cancer yourself, being aware of the following conditions could save your life.
- Lumps, sores, and bumps that don’t heal
- Red or white patches inside of your mouth
- Ear, mouth, or face pain
- Pain when swallowing
- Mouth ulcers
- Chronic bad breath
- White or red plaque
- Chronic coughing
- Enlarged or swollen lymph nodes
What Causes Oral Cancer?
According to your dentist in South Carolina, cancer is caused by abnormal cells in an isolated part of the body. Once those cells spread, they will damage the surrounding organs and tissue.
While there is no one cause, people who smoke or are heavy drinkers and people who have a family history are in the high-risk category for oral cancer. In fact, tobacco users are three times as likely to have oral cancer as people who don’t smoke or chew.
Oral Cancer Kills
Tongue, throat, cheek, gum, lip, and esophageal cancers are responsible for more than 50,000 cases each year in the United States. Of those cases, two thirds occurred in men.
Why Oral Cancer Screenings are Important
Having an annual or bi annual oral cancer screening prevents things from getting worse. While you may have no noticeable signs, your Georgia dentist will be able to tell if something doesn’t seem right.
If any of the signs mentioned above are present, Bela Family Dentistry will take a sample for a biopsy to be sent to the lab for further examination.
Don’t Wait Until it’s Too Late
Just like all things in life, if left untreated, oral cancer will progress and get worse. Having oral cancer screenings with your primary care physician and your doctor in South Carolina will give everyone the heads up if something doesn’t seem right.
If you haven’t seen your dentist in Georgia for some time, call, send a text or a direct message to Bela Family Dentistry today.