Risk Factors of Oral Cancer

Risk Factors of Oral CancerDid you know that your every-six-month visit to our Los Angeles cosmetic dentist includes not just a cleaning and polishing but also a thorough examination for signs of gum disease, decay, and even signs of oral cancer? Oral cancer can appear simply as a sore or a growth that doesn't go away, and it may appear anywhere on the soft tissues of the mouth. Because it spreads so quickly, if it is not detected and treated early, it can be deadly.

Several factors can increase your risk of developing oral cancer, including:
•    Smoking. Smokers are at six times the risk of non-smokers of oral cancer.
•    Excessive alcohol consumption. Those who drink heavily are also six times more likely to develop oral cancer than non-drinkers.
•    Smoking and drinking combined substantially increase the risk of oral cancer.
•    UV exposure, either through the sun or through tanning beds, increases the risk of oral cancer.
•    A family history of cancer can increase the risk of developing oral cancer.
•    Exposure to other carcinogens may also be linked to oral cancer.

If you have one or more risk factors, you should discuss your concerns with our Los Angeles dentist. A smoking cessation program, limiting your alcohol consumption, and avoiding excess sun exposure, may help you better manage lifestyle factors contributing to your oral cancer risk. Regular self-exams to look for unusual spots or sores can help you find early signs of problems. If you have multiple risk factors or a history of other cancers, our dentist may also advice more frequent checkups to ensure your oral health.

Source: Los Angeles Dentist

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