When it comes to your dental health, obviously you want to take care of your teeth and gums. This means that you need to brush your teeth regularly, floss everyday, and visit your dentist at least twice a year for your regular check-ups. But cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease aren’t the only problems that you have to deal with. You also need to be on the look out for serious health conditions. In particular, the team here at our Windsor, CT cosmetic dentistry practice would like to focus on oral cancers.
Cancer can form on various structures in the mouth. The gums, the jawbone, the salivary glands, the tonsils, lymph nodes, throat, gums, and so on can all be afflicted. Cancer from other parts of the body can also spread to different parts of your mouth as well. The well-known film writer and acclaimed critic Roger Ebert, for example, has battled with thyroid cancer for several years now. The cancer spread to his salivary glands and eventually his jaw.
One of the best ways to identify if cancer is forming is to pay attention to various symptoms and warning signs. If you notice any lesions, ulcers, or lumps in different parts of your mouth, be sure to ask your doctor or your dentist about these so a screening can be performed. You should also note any issues you have with persistent dry mouth, swallowing, chewing, speaking, sores that last for more than two weeks, and any pain in various parts of your mouth.
In terms of prevention, there are plenty of things you can do to reduce your chances of developing an oral cancer. The big one is to quit using tobacco products. That means now chewing tobacco and no cigars and cigarettes. All of these products increase the risk for developing different kinds of cancers apart from just oral cancer and have many other adverse effects on your overall health. Excessive alcohol consumption is also associated with oral cancer and other health problems, so be sure to drink in moderation.