Dentists aren’t just qualified to spot and diagnose tooth and gum problems such as tooth decay and gum disease; they’re also trained to notice early indicators of oral cancer. This type of cancer can be fatal but it is treatable if found in the initial stages, so here’s another reason to visit the dentist every six months.
Men are at a higher risk of developing oral cancer than women, as they are twice as likely to suffer from the disease. Other high risks include smoking and drinking excessive amounts of alcohol. However, one in every four oral cancer patients is either female or a non-smoker or non-drinker. Even if you’re not in a high risk group, you should still take care to check for the signs of oral cancer.
You should visit your dentist if you notice small swellings or rust-coloured patches in your mouth. Oral bleeding could be a sign of oral cancer as well and these symptoms are often accompanied by pain in the mouth whilst eating and sudden rapid weight loss.
Your dentist is best placed to examine your mouth for potential signs or oral cancer at your regular check-up. However, you can use your finger to feel for mouth swellings at home, or look in the mirror for any discoloured patches.
Most of the time, these symptoms are nothing to worry about but it’s always best to get anything out of the ordinary checked out to put your mind at rest. Ask your Harley Street Dental Studio dentist for more information about how to guard against oral cancer. They can provide you with advice on how to quit smoking, cut down on alcohol and keep your diet healthy.
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