February 17, 2015
More than 43,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year. That’s approximately one person per hour, every hour, for the entire year. The oral cancer mortality rate is particularly high due to the cancer being routinely discovered late in its development. While dentists routinely screen for oral cancer each time you get a dental checkup, often, the patients most at risk for developing the disease don’t see a dentist on a regular basis. Don’t jeopardize your health by skipping the dental checkup you need to stay healthy. Make an appointment with Dr. Nichols and Dr. Collins at Premier Walk-In Dental today. Premier Walk-In Dental delivers quality care daily throughout Rockledge, FL, Cocoa, Satellite Beach, Merritt Island, Viera, to Suntree, Melbourne, Palm Bay, and the surrounding communities.
What Causes Oral Cancer?
While anyone can develop oral cancer, some factors may increase your likelihood. Anything that increases your risk of getting a disease is called a risk factor, but having a risk factor does not mean that you will get cancer. The most common risk factors for oral cancer include:
- Gender: Oral cancer is twice as common in men as in women.
- Age: The average age at diagnosis for oral cancer is 62, and 2/3 of individuals with this disease are over age 55.
- Sunlight: Cancers of the lip are more common among people who work outdoors or others with prolonged exposure to sunlight.
- Genetics: Some inherited genetic mutations, which cause different syndromes in the body, carry a high risk of oral cancer.
- Tobacco use: About 80% of people with oral cancers use tobacco in the form of cigarettes, chewing tobacco or snuff.
- Alcohol: About 70% of people diagnosed with oral cancer are heavy drinkers.
- Human papillomavirus (HPV) infection: There is a strong link between HPV-16 and oral cancer. People with oral cancer linked to HPV tend to not be smokers or drinkers.
What Are The Symptoms of Oral Cancer?
- A white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of the mouth
- Difficulty swallowing or chewing
- Difficulty moving the jaw or tongue
- Numbness anywhere in the mouth
- Jaw pain or swelling
- Loosened teeth
- Voice changes
- Sudden unexplained weight loss
- Persistent bad breath
- A sore in the mouth that does not heal after two weeks
- Persistent mouth pain
- A lump or thickening in the cheek
- A sore throat or feeling that something is caught in the throat
If you, or someone you love, are at risk for developing oral cancer, make an appointment for an oral cancer screening with Dr. Nichols and Dr. Collins at Premier Walk-In Dental today. The experienced team at Premier Walk-In Dental proudly serve families daily throughout Rockledge, FL, Cocoa, Satellite Beach, Merritt Island, Viera, to Suntree, Melbourne, Palm Bay, and the neighboring areas.
December 20, 2012
Periodontitis, or gum disease, is the result of plaque that is not removed and allows bacteria to grow and affect the gums. If untreated, the gums will shrink and eventually teeth will fall out.
Since the early symptoms are relatively mild, it’s very easy for gum disease to go undetected. Symptoms generally include red or swollen gums, bleeding gums, and persistent bad breath. This is another reason why it’s crucial that you visit your dentist every six months for your regular checkup. Your dentist will check for gum disease at each appointment. The earlier it is detected the better.
Gum disease can affect far more than just your gums, however. According to the Mayo Clinic, the bacteria that cause gum disease can enter your bloodstream through your gum tissue. This allows the possibility for other health complications if the gum disease is left untreated.
There has been a link found between pregnant women with gum disease and low birth weight babies. Thus, it’s essential that pregnant women add a dental visit to their pregnancy check list.
The American Academy of Periodontology discusses how there is a link between gum disease and heart disease. Though the connection is still being studied, it is believed that this bacteria enters the blood stream and travels to the heart and the rest of the body.
Also, a recent study has found a link between severe gum disease and impotence in men.
Gum disease can affect more than just the health of your teeth. While easily treatable, this disease could have severe complications for your health if left untreated. Regular checkups at your dentist’s office could have far reaching effects on your overall health.