April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month

April is Oral Cancer Awareness month and we would like you to join us in raising awareness around our communities and inform people more about this disease in order to detect it earlier and save lives.

There are around 50,000 cases of oral cancer diagnosed yearly. Oral cancer will claim around 10,000 lives annually. Moreover, only 60% of patients live longer than 5 years. Of the 60% who survive it for this long, many develop speech problems and other facial disfigurement and eating difficulties. The main reason the death rates are high is due to late discovery of this type of cancer.

Furthermore, one of the main reasons for oral cancer is alcohol and tobacco usage, as well as HPV virus developing in younger, healthier, non-smoking individuals. For this reason, getting screenings done early is the best way to save lives.

While you may have no symptoms at all, you should
see your oral and maxillofacial surgeon or dentist if
you experience any of the following:

• A sore on the lip or in the mouth that does
not heal.
• A lump or thickening on the lips or gums
or in the mouth.
• A white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsils
or lining of the mouth.
• Bleeding, pain or numbness in the lip or mouth.
• Change in voice.
• Loose teeth or dentures that no longer fit well.
• Trouble chewing or swallowing or moving the
tongue or jaw.
• Swelling of the jaw.
• Sore throat or feeling that something is caught
in the throat.

Early Detection

• Performing a self-examination regularly
increases the chance of identifying changes
or new growths early.
• If you have risk factors, also see your oral
and maxillofacial surgeon or dentist for an
oral examination at least annually.
• The earlier the cancer is detected, the easier the
treatment and the greater the chance of a cure.

April is Oral Cancer Awareness month. For more info, click here

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