Oral cancer is a serious disease that goes undetected in many people as it gets more dangerous. Don’t assume a persistent sore is a cold sore or a canker sore—get it checked out. Become aware of the signs of mouth cancer, and visit a dentist or a physician for a checkup if any of them occurs. Early discovery and treatment are important for surviving oral cancer.

Yearly Dental Checkups

One of the best ways to catch conditions such as oral cancer is the yearly dental checkup. Finding the Best Dentist Near Me should be one of the moving-in tasks for every person. As a person moves into a new home, they should make the effort to locate trustworthy doctors and dentists before they have a health emergency. Both practitioners can find and treat oral or mouth cancer. Keeping the mouth, teeth, and gums healthy is one way to avoid health problems. Clean teeth and a healthy mouth help anyone to look there best as well as protecting the individual’s health.

15 Signs of Oral Cancer

There are 15 signs to be aware of in the fight against oral cancer. These warning signs can be mistaken for other conditions, such as colds or toothaches. But, if these conditions persist for more than a couple weeks, make an appointment with a dentist or a doctor.

1. Mouth or lip sores that do not heal and may get worse, causing irritating mouth pain.

2. Difficulty swallowing or chewing with a sore throat and the feeling there is something caught in the throat.

3. The inside of the cheek has a lump or thickening spot that does not go away.

4. White or red areas on the gums, tonsil, tongue, or mouth lining that are not normal.

5. A jaw that is swollen and hard to move. This may make dentures no longer comfortable.

6. A lump in the neck that does not go away and may be painful.

7. Bad breath that does not get better.

8. Losing weight without dieting.

9. Voice changes without explanation.

10. Loosening of teeth.

11. Painful teeth or jaw without cavities being present.

12. A tongue that is numb, swollen, or hard to move.

13. Pain in the ears when there is no ear infection.

14. Mouth cancer is caused by cells in the mouth or lips changing or mutating to form a tumor, so an unexplained mass or sore can mean trouble.

15. Cancer can spread to other areas of the head and neck, so lumps, masses, or sore spots in those areas should be examined by a doctor.

What Are the Causes Of Oral Cancer?

Oral or mouth cancer is caused by mutating squamous cells that line the lips and mouth. Though doctors are not sure what causes these mutations, there are some proven risk factors.

1. Any kind of tobacco use, including cigarettes, chewing tobacco, cigars, pipes.

2. Heavy alcohol use can contribute to oral cancer.

3. The human papillomavirus, or HPV, is a sexually transmitted virus that can lead to oral cancer.

4. People with weakened immune systems have a higher risk of oral cancer development.

5. Too much time in the sun with unprotected lips.

Preventing Oral Cancer

There is no sure-fire way to prevent oral or mouth cancer, but there ways to reduce the risk. Get those yearly dental and health checkups so problems can be found early and treated. Always limit the time in the bright sun, and use high-SPF lotions on lips and face when in the sun. Live a healthy lifestyle that limits alcohol use and eliminates the use of all tobacco products.

Cite this article as:
Editorial Staff, "15 Signs of Oral Cancer: When Have You Had Your Last Checkup?," in Medicalopedia, August 28, 2020, [Permalink: https://www.medicalopedia.org/9198/15-signs-of-oral-cancer-when-have-you-had-your-last-checkup/].