Helpful tips from dentist in Highland, MI on minimizing risk of oral cancer
When one thinks about their oral health, the focus is generally on avoiding cavities or gum disease. One facet of oral health that many do not think about is the avoidance of oral cancer. When one takes the time to educate themselves on oral cancer, they will find that there are steps that can be taken to minimize the risk. Even then, sometimes life just has a way of hitting us with the bad news. Whether you are wanting to learn more about what you can do to minimize risk or if you fear you have developed it, Milford Dental and Associates in Highland, MI is here for you. Our doctors can provide tips for the prevention of oral cancers and are talented in the care of such cancer should it develop.
Oral cancer can occur in the oral cavity (including the lips, cheeks, and tongue) or in the oropharynx (the soft palate, throat, and tonsils). These cancers are not always simple to detect and can occur in several ways. In many cases these cancers can go undetected until they have reached later stages and spread to the lymph nodes. This makes knowing what you can do in your everyday life to minimize the risk important.
No Smoking or Smokeless Tobacco
Your risk of oral cancer skyrockets the longer you use tobacco products. This includes both smoking and smokeless tobacco products.
Smokeless tobacco products (including chewing and snuff tobacco products) can create ulcers in the mouth called leukoplakia that can become cancerous. Other smokeless tobacco products contain chemicals that damage cancer protecting genes.
Drink in Moderation
The longer you use alcohol and the more you drink will raise your risk of oral cancer. Alcohol can cause changes in the body’s chemistry that breaks down its defenses against cancer. It has been found that people who ingest more than 3 and a half drinks per day have an increased cancer risk by 2 to 3 times.
These are just a couple easy ways you can reduce your risk of oral cancers. Another way you can reduce this risk is by seeing your dentist regularly. With regular exams, the hope is that any early signs of oral cancer can be detected before allowed to progress. If you would like to make an appointment with Milford Dental and Associates, please call (248) 845-4575 today!Back to Oral Cancer Screening Page