Cancer is defined as the uncontrollable growth of cells that invade and cause damage to surrounding tissue. If it’s not taken care of, it can be fatal. It is important to understand the causes and to know how to prevent yourself of Oral Cancer. Here’s everything you need to know.
The most common symptoms of Oral Cancer are as follows:
- Swellings/thickenings, lumps or bumps, rough spots/crusts/or eroded areas on the lips, gums, or other areas inside the mouth
- The development of velvety white, red, or speckled (white and red) patches in the mouth
- Unexplained bleeding in the mouth
- Unexplained numbness, loss of feeling, or pain/tenderness in any area of the face, mouth, or neck
- Persistent sores on the face, neck, or mouth that bleed easily and do not heal within 2 weeks
- A soreness or feeling that something is caught in the back of the throat
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing, speaking, or moving the jaw or tongue
- Hoarseness, chronic sore throat, or change in voice
- Ear pain
- A change in the way your teeth or dentures fit together
- Dramatic weight loss
- Tobacco and alcohol use are prominent risk factors for mouth cancer. Smokers are three times more likely than nonsmokers to develop mouth cancer, and people who smoke and drink alcohol have up to 30 times higher risk than those who do not smoke and drink.
- Ultraviolet exposure on the lips, from the sun, sunlamps, or sunbeds
- A diet with too much red meat, processed meat, and fried foods
- Gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD), a digestive condition where acid from the stomach leaks back up to the gullet
- Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection
- Prior radiation treatment, or radiotherapy, in the head, neck, or both
- Regularly chewing betel nuts.
- Exposure to certain chemicals, especially asbestos, sulfuric acid, and formaldehyde
- Family history of Cancer.
- Always brush and floss your teeth regularly.
- Do not smoke (or chew) any type of tobacco product.
- Drink alcohol in moderation (one to two drinks per day) and never binge drink.
- Limit your exposure to the sun.
- Exercise regularly. An active lifestyle is known to boost the immune system and help ward off cancer.
- Choose cancer-fighting foods in your diet. Eat lots of beans, berries, cruciferous vegetables (like cabbage and broccoli), dark green leafy vegetables, flaxseed, garlic, grapes, green tea, soy and tomatoes for cancer prevention.
- See your dentist or dental hygienist regularly (at least every six months) and ask for an oral cancer screening to be done.
Surgery- Surgical removal of the tumor involves taking out the tumor and a margin of healthy tissue around it. A small tumor will require minor surgery, but for larger tumors, surgery may involve removing some of the tongue or the jawbone.If surgery significantly changes the appearance of the face, or the patient’s ability to talk, eat, or both, reconstructive surgery may be necessary. This involves using transplanted grafts of skin, muscle, or bone from other parts of the body. Dental implants may be needed.
Radiation therapy- Oral cancers are especially sensitive to radiation therapy, which uses beams of high-energy X-rays or radiation particles to damage the DNA inside the tumor cells, destroying their ability to reproduce. External beam radiation delivers radiation from outside, while in brachytherapy, radioactive seeds and wires can be placed near the cancer inside the body. Radiation therapy may remove cancer if a patient is in the early stages of oral cancer.
Chemotherapy- Widespread cancer may be treated with chemotherapy as well as radiation therapy, especially if there is a significant chance of the cancer returning. Chemotherapy involves using powerful medicines that damage the DNA of the cancer cells, undermining their ability to reproduce.
We have an experienced team of professionals at the multi-speciality Dental Health Care Center – Creative Smiles with Dr. Veejay Deshpandey, Dental Surgeon and Implantologist and an innovator in the field of Implant Dentistry heading the team. At Creative Smiles, we offer the most advanced dental services at very affordable prices.
Creative Smiles, in Thane, Mumbai can bring the sparkle back to your smile and help you attain a smile you’ll be proud to show off. To learn more, contact us to schedule your no-obligation consultation today!