Yes, yes you are! Oral Cancer is more common than you may be aware and it can happen to anyone. At least 53,000 known new cases of oral cancer are diagnosed each year. And at least 8,000 of them lead to death annually. Oral Cancer can be very fatal and painful unless treated right away, that is why “EARLY DETECTION IS KEY!” It is SO important to keep up with regular dental check ups. Not just because you need a dental cleaning, but also because we can watch out for precursors to more severe dental issues…like oral cancer.
Where Oral Cancer is commonly found:
Floor of mouth
What makes you high-risk for Oral Cancer?
Anything containing tobacco- Smoking it.. chewing it… letting it sit in your gums, etc… Tobacco is unhealthy for many reasons, but it is also one of the top 3 leading causes for oral cancer.
Electronic cigarettes initially seemed like a better alternative at first. Now studies are proving e-cigs are just as damaging to your health as smoking tobacco. Not only harming your lungs, but also your oral health. Such as inflammation of your gums, and YES causing oral cancer.
For those who consume Alcohol, you are 6 TIMES more likely to catch oral cancer than someone who does not.
Aging is inevitable. That is why we are all at risk for oral cancer. Studies have shown that new cases of oral cancer occur after the age of 40. If you are over 40, you should be getting oral cancer exams, annually.
Men are more likely to get oral cancer than women. BUT that does not mean if you are a woman you are not at risk. You should get screened regardless of your gender.
HPV (The Human papillomavirus):
Researchers are finding a link between HPV, and oral cancer. HPV is a very common STD around the world. Most sexually-active persons acquire HVP at some point in their lives. Get vaccinated if you have not already and just be aware that HPV can lead to oral cancer.
History of Cancer:
Just like many other cancers, “History of Cancer” plays a huge roll in how at risk you are at getting cancer. And like many other cancers, if there is history of cancer, be proactive- get regular checkups.
These are a few of the common leading causes of oral cancer. If you have/do any of them, it just means you are at higher risk than others. Now that you are aware, be an advocate for your own health. We are here to help!
What you need to do:
Whether or not you fall under any of the at high risk category, you are still at risk. Here are some reminders.
Don’t skip your dental check ups
Keep up with regular dental cleanings (at least every 6 months)
Pay attention to what’s happening in your mouth. (any long-lasting sores, pains, sensitivity – call us! 203-324-6171)
Get Oral Cancer Screenings, Annually!
Oral cancer can be treated. Keep in mind, the earlier it is found the better chances for successful results. We can’t treat it if you don’t come to see us. We are here for you!
Get Screened Today! An extra 5 Mins at the dentist can save your life.203-324-6171