Things You Need to Know About Oral Cancer
Visiting our Placerville dentists every six months is good for your mouth. An additional and potentially life-saving benefit to regular dental cleanings and exams is the opportunity to have our dental professionals check for the early signs of oral cancer. We spot potential problems early, acting quickly to help our patients have the best outcomes possible.
Symptoms of Oral Cancer
Knowing the signs of oral cancer protects you and your loved ones. If you experience any of the following symptoms, a visit to the Placerville Dental Group is recommended:
- A persistent sore throat that doesn’t heal;
- Red or white patches on the inside of your cheek;
- Persistent tongue pain or lesions;
- Jaw pain or stiffness;
- Mouth sores that won’t heal;
- Feeling that something is always in your throat;
- Persistent difficulty swallowing or pain when swallowing;
- Consistent pain when chewing.
If any of these symptoms last for two weeks or more, a visit for an exam is strongly recommended. Do not wait for your semi-annual cleaning! During your regular dental check-ups, however, be sure to talk to us about anything that seems different or feels unusual with your gums, tongue, cheeks or the roof of your mouth.
Reducing the Risk of Oral Cancer
It’s also important to remember that oral cancer risks increase greatly when a patient chews or smokes tobacco. Even vaping (using e-cigarettes), is known to irritate the soft tissues, potentially leading to dental complications such as bleeding, pain, tooth loss and periodontitis. And even smoking marijuana has been implicated by the American Association for Cancer Research as a possible cause of increased oral cancer risk. We care about all our patients at the Placerville Dental Group and while early detection is a key to cures, healthy habits are the best prevention!