What You Need to Know About Oral Cancer:
It’s an important public service when high-profile people like actor Michael Douglas turn the spotlight on oral cancer. Yet still many people remain unaware of this potentially lethal disease. Oral cancer is not rare and it’s occurring more frequently and to a younger group with every passing year.
At one time, oral cancer was associated almost exclusively with ageing and with tobacco and alcohol consumption. The dramatic increase of the past few years is believed to be caused by exposure to the HPV-16 virus, responsible for most cervical cancers. In fact, HPV-related oral cancers rose 28% between 1999-2007, and they continue to rise by about 3 % every year. Alarmingly, the fastest growing portion of the population that has oral cancer are 14 -18 year olds due to prevalence of oral sexual acts. Also, know that periodontal disease increases your risk of all forms of oral cancer.
Please know that this is an ugly disease. It can be disfiguring and painful, unless caught in its earliest stages. This is one cancer that cannot be hidden from view.
If you experience any of these common warning signs, please give our Newport News cosmetic dental office a call at 757-320-2749.
- Red or white patch in the mouth that lasts more than two weeks
- Change in voice or hoarseness that lasts more than two weeks
- Sore throat that does not subside
- Pain, swelling, ulcer or a lump in the mouth or neck that does not subside
- Ulcer in the mouth that does not heal within two weeks
When have found that at early stages, oral cancers have an 80-90% survival rate, yet someone dies from oral cancer every hour, every day. This is why we utilize our advanced oral cancer screening technology to aid us in the early detection of areas of concern. You can always expect that our cosmetic and restorative dentistry practice will guide you towards safer, more effective and proactive oral health care.