The word cancer is enough to send shivers down the spine. Cancer can sprout in any part of your body, which makes this ordeal challenging to treat. Nevertheless, advances in medical sciences have helped us identify signs of cancer that will aid in early diagnosis and better treatment. Like we said earlier, any part of your body can succumb to cancer, and your mouth is no exception. Oral cancer is a broad term for cancer that springs up in your mouth. It can affect the cheeks, tongue, mouth, palate, and throat. Let’s discuss the basics of oral cancer, its risk factor, and some telltale oral cancer signs and symptoms.
Cancer starts from the squamous epithelial cell of your oral cavity. These are basically your skin cells that appear like a flat sheet of the jigsaw when viewed under a microscope. New cells replace the old cell, and this sheet-like structure remains steady. Unfortunately, cancer disrupts harmony.
Cancer is caused by genetic changes that disturb the cell’s internal clock, and cells get hellbent on doing one thing: reproducing aimlessly. Clusters of cells soon begin to form, known as a tumor. However, the bad influence never stops, and this corrupt gene soon affects other cells of the body as well, and that is how cancer spreads. Cancer’s lifecycle also reveals to us why we need to diagnose cancer early, as it improves the chances of recovery and limits the damage done to the body.
Cancer Signs And Symptoms:
Early cancer signs seem quite similar to other oral illnesses. The only difference is that cancerous sores and patches don’t heal on their own. Unlike harmless sores and patches like canker sores, cancerous sores and patches won’t heal in a week or two but stay put. Here is a list of oral cancer signs and symptoms.
- Sores inside your mouth and lips that bleed easily.
- A white or red patch on the inside of your mouth.
- Unexplained bleeding in your mouth.
- Numbness in your mouth.
- Difficulty in moving your tongue.
- Coarseness in the voice.
- A feeling that something is caught in the throat.
- Swelling or pain occurring in your mouth and throat without any apparent causes.
- The inability to eat well may cause unintentional weight loss.
- Chronic bad breath.
Risk Factors Of Oral Cancer:
Smoking or chewing tobacco puts you under the radar. Moreover, excessive use of alcohol also increases the chance of developing oral cancer. The human papillomavirus also contributes to oral cancer, and so does having a family history of oral cancer. These risk factors contribute to 75% of all oral cancer cases. Nevertheless, the remaining 25% cannot be linked to any of the risk factors.
Visiting A Dentist Regularly:
Regular dental visits will help you catch cancer early in the act and treat it timely. Timely treatment ensures a great survival rate and recovery. Therefore, if you are experiencing some unexplainable signs in your mouth, reach out to a competent dentist like Briar Forest Dental Group. You can call us at (713) 784-4430 to learn more about our services.