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In the past, oral cancer was associated only with males over forty, but it is becoming more common in women and young people. If detected early, oral cancer can respond favorably to treatment. Most oral cancers are detected by your dentist during dental checkups, but we offer a list of common oral cancer symptoms to watch out for.

Here are a few signs of oral cancer:

— Lumps or thickened areas around the cheek
— Red or white patches on your tongue, gums, or tonsils
— A persistent sore throat or feeling like something is caught in your throat
— Difficulty chewing or swallowing
— Numbness in your tongue
— Swelling of your jaw
— Chronic mouth pain
— Difficulty moving your tongue or jaw
— Unexplained bleeding in your mouth
— Loose teeth
— Dental or jaw pain
— Changes in your vocal cords
— Lump in your neck
— Unexplained weight loss
— Chronic bad breath
— Ear pain
— Persistent sores in the mouth

The most common causes of oral cancer are heavy smoking and drinking and HPV (human papillomavirus). You can increase your risk of oral cancer through overexposure to sunlight, eating a poor diet, and having poor dental hygiene.

There are many preventive measures you can take to protect yourself from oral cancer. If you smoke, speak with your dentist about a tobacco cessation program. Eat a healthy, balanced diet, and reduce your alcohol consumption. Get vaccinated against HPV and wear sunblock to protect your lips. Maintain an effective oral care routine that includes brushing and flossing your teeth every day. Finally, visit a dentist at least twice a year for dental exams and cleanings.

If you are interested in scheduling a dental visit at Gentle Touch Dental to learn more about oral cancer in Conyers, Georgia, call 770-760-7566 today to arrange a time to meet with Dr. Dexter Inniss.