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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Oral Cancer Awareness

April draws awareness to Oral Cancer. As always early detection is important. Early detection offers a bit more power to fight back. There are approximately 43,250 people in the U.S. that will be diagnosed with oral cancer just this year (Oral Cancer Foundation). Bringing awareness to oral cancer will hopefully help educate and stop the higher mortality rates than other cancers. The reason for the higher rates is because it is often found in the later stages. By detecting oral cancer early it can be stopped before it spreads. The current rate of infection oral cancer kills one person every 24 hours or one a day. 

  • Oral cancer often occurs on the tongue, gums, floor of the mouth and tonsils. The major risk factor for oral cancer is smoking and tobacco use. The combination of heavy alcohol consumption with tobacco use makes the development of oral cancer 15 times more likely than those who abstain from tobacco use.
  • Age is also a risk factor. People over 40 are more likely to have oral cancer. The fastest growing segment of population that is being diagnosed with oral cancer are nonsmokers under the age of 50.
  • The human papilloma virus or HPV has also been known to cause certain types of oral cancer. The risk is not as high as others though as out of 200 strands tested only 9 are risky. 
Oral cancer is hard to detect in early stages as the mouth is very sensitive. White or red patches in your mouth or small ulcers like canker sores are early signs that one should take note of. An abrasion in your mouth that does not heal within 14 days then it is time to see a dentist. 

Symptoms of pre-cancer:
  • A change in the way the teeth fit together
  • A color change in the oral tissues
  • A tiny white or red spot/sore anywhere in the mouth
  • Any sore that bleeds easily or refuses to heal
  • Difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking or moving the jaw or tongue
  • Lumps, thickenings, rough spots, or crusty areas
  • Pain, tenderness, or numbness anywhere in the mouth or on the lips


  1. To be honest, this is the first time I've learned about oral cancer, its possible causes and what can happen. It's one of the cancers you rarely hear about in the news and in other resources. Thank you for this, really. It's good to learn risk factors and causes of diseases.

    1. thank you very much. I have a friend from highschool who recently battled oral cancer he had chewed tobacco since h.s.
      thanks for visiting us


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