Over 45,000 Americans are diagnosed with oral cancer each year. When caught early, it can be very treatable, which is why at our office, we screen for oral cancer at every hygiene visit. There are certain steps you can take to lessen your chances of developing oral cancer.
- Visit your dentist regularly. Your dentist knows what to look for when screening for oral cancer, and early detection is the key to successful treatment.
- Quit tobacco of any kind. This drastically increases your chances of developing oral cancer. Seek help if needed– this is of course not an easy task!
- Avoid risky behavior. Oral cancer can be caused by HPV-16, a strain of human papilloma virus transmitted through oral sex.
- Eat a healthy diet, high in fruits and vegetables and low in processed meats which contain nitrosamines just as tobacco does.
- If you notice any bumps, sores, or other changes in your mouth, make an appointment with your doctor or dentist immediately.