Did You Know…
April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month
Oral and pharyngeal cancer (cancer of the mouth and upper throat) collectively kills nearly one person every hour of every day of the year. Oral Cancer is a serious and deadly disease, however if caught early it is highly treatable. Generally, smoking and tobacco use are still major risk factors, the fastest growing segment of oral cancer patients is young, healthy, nonsmoking individuals due to the connection to the HPV-16 virus.
April is oral cancer awareness month to remind people that it is important to see your dentist regularly and to get screened for oral cancer. Dentist are trained to visually inspect for any signs of abnormalities, and with the help of Velscope-which uses a blue light to illuminate the tissue and highlight any suspicious changes.
The most likely place to detect abnormalities are at the side of the tongue, back of the mouth, and the lips. If you feel or see an unusual lumps or sores that doesn’t heal within two weeks, make an appointment with your dentist to get checked and don’t forget your regular recalls to get screened for oral cancer.
At our office we offer this free of charge, we feel that this one simple quick check can be a life saver.
Clayton “Ben” Smith