Oral cancer, also referred to as mouth cancer, is a deadly type of cancer that affects thousands of people every year, especially in the United States.
It is important to know the early signs of mouth cancer.
The sooner you catch and treat oral cancer, the greater your chances are of beating it!
While many cancers are unavoidable due to genetics, you can greatly reduce your risk of developing oral cancer by quitting tobacco.
Oral cancer commonly involves the tongue, lips, gums, palate, as well as the mouth cavity’s membrane lining. Oral cancer develops as the result of malignant cell growth, which is often caused by the chemicals in tobacco.
Oral cancer affects both men and women, especially those who are 40+.
Again, regardless of your age, you need to know the early signs of mouth cancer, so you have a greater chance at beating it.
By being able to recognize the early signs of mouth cancer, you have more time to prevent complications, such as speech problems or the cancer’s spread to lymph nodes. Once the cancer spreads to your lymph nodes, then the only way to treat it is with chemotherapy. Nip the potential for oral cancer in the bud by knowing these telltale signs:
1. Sores or lumps inside the mouth that don’t heal.
If you’ve got sores that won’t go away or that continue to get bigger and bleed a lot, then schedule a dentist appointment right away. Thickening skin or a lump in your cheek could also be a sign of a potentially cancerous growth.
2. Red or white patches in the mouth, gums or tongue.
The size and appearance of these patches can vary, but, regardless, red or white patches in the mouth may be a sign of cancer. Not all spots like this in your mouth are a sign of oral cancer, but if you use tobacco at all, and you have some white or red patches that seem to be sticking around, then you definitely need to have them checked out.
3. Numbness in your mouth.
Another initial sign of oral cancer is numbness in any part of your mouth. If any part of your mouth is feeling numb, and you haven’t done coke in the last few hours, get your butt to the dentist!
4. Painful or loose teeth.
If you did NOT get socked in the mouth and your jaw swells, or if teeth become painful or feel like they’re getting loose, go to the dentist. If you wear dentures and they’re not fitting because your jaw is swelling, go get checked out.
5. Chronic bad breath.
Hold up! Before you go rushing off to the dentist, just because you have bad breath a lot doesn’t necessarily mean you have cancer. If your bad breath doesn’t go away after lots of brushing and mouthwash, even then, you still may not have cancer.
Chronic bad breath (or halitosis) can be caused by a number of different things, but ONE of the things that can cause it is cancer.
If no amount of brushing helps your bad breath, it doesn’t mean it’s an early sign of mouth cancer, but if you’re a tobacco user, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to go get checked out right away.
6. Speech problems.
If you don’t have a cold and you’re not drunk, but your voice is either more husky, quieter, slurred or you sound like you have a cold, then go see your doctor. Speech problems, while completely sober, can sometimes be one of the early signs of oral cancer.
Speech problems also can be a warning sign for other serious issues (like stroke or neurological disorders), so if you’re not able to speak normally, don’t take any chances and get yourself to the doctor.
Those are 6 common early signs of mouth cancer. Of course, just because you have one of these symptoms, doesn’t absolutely mean you have cancer. There are other possible causes for each of the symptoms listed here. If you use tobacco or have used tobacco regularly in the past, go see a dentist or doctor as soon as possible if you experience any of these early warning signs of mouth cancer .
These early warning signs of mouth cancer listed here are just possible warning signs. Tragically, sometimes cancer can strike without warning!
If you’re using tobacco products at all, then quit now because you won’t always get a warning, and your chances of getting mouth cancer increase if you use tobacco.
If you’re ready to quit, then be sure to checkout BaccOff’s Quit Dipping Bootcamp
And also join the support group for those who want to quit without giving up.
And if you need more convincing that you should quit tobacco today, then be sure to read these 4 important reasons to quit dipping today
And here are a few other health risks from using tobacco.
One last thing: full disclosure and a disclaimer folks…I am NOT a doctor, so don’t take anything I say over the word of your doctor. Always listen to your doctor first!