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Tips To Prevent Oral Cancer

Posted on October 21, 2021

209 NYC Dental is the first line of defense in preventing oral cancer in our patients. Cancer is a scary word, and no one wants to be afflicted with this malady. Prevention of oral cancer and its detection at an early stage is of paramount importance to our patients and our doctors. The good news is that if oral cancer is detected early, the cure rate over three years is between 80%-90%.

As dentists when we speak of oral cancer we are looking at two aspects of the oral cavity:

  1. Mouth: Consists of lips, cheeks, tongue, and gums
  2. Oropharynx: Consists of soft palate, tonsils, throat, and the floor of the mouth.

Current Facts About Oral Cancer

  1. Men are 2x more likely to contract oral cancer than women. 
  2. The incidence of oral cancer has been increasing in people under fifty years of age with a significant increase observed in twenty to thirty-year-olds. 
  3. If people survive their first encounter with oral cancer, they have an increased risk of developing second cancer.
  4. Biopsies are the only proper way to diagnose cancer. 
  5. There are many different causes of oral cancer. 
  6. Patients taking immunosuppressive medications (i.e. organ transplant) are at increased risk of developing the disease

Symptoms

  • Lip or mouth sore that doesn’t heal
  • White or red patch that doesn’t fade away
  • Loose teeth
  • Growth or lump on the inside of the mouth
  • Mouth pain
  • Ear pain
  • Difficulty or pain upon swallowing
  • Painful or loose dentures

Risks That Could Lead To Oral Cancer

  1. Heavy tobacco use
  2. Heavy alcohol consumption (more than two glasses per day)
  3. Excessive sun exposure
  4. Acquiring sexually transmitted diseases like Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
  5. Weakened immune system

Oral Cancer Prevention Tips

  1. Avoid tobacco completely
  2. Avoid heavy alcohol consumption
  3. Avoid excessive exposure to the sun 
  4. Wear sunscreen that blocks out ultraviolet rays (A and B)
  5. Wear a wide-brimmed hat
  6. Exercise
  7. Eat a proper diet: 
  8. Use condoms and dental dams to prevent HPV
  9. Get vaccinated for HPV
  10. Make sure that dentures fit properly and do not cause sores.
  11. Go to the dentist once every six months for dental checkup and oral cancer screening. 
  12. Maintain proper oral home care:
  • Brush teeth twice a day for two minutes with small soft bristle brush
  • Floss teeth once every 24 hours before bedtime
  • Use fluoride toothpaste with low abrasion level
  • If you  use mouthwash make sure that it is alcohol free.

Make an Appointment with 209 NYC Dental

Oral cancer can be a serious disease. The key is to prevent it. The other part of the puzzle is to be screened twice yearly so that if there is a change it’s diagnosed at a very early stage.  Early stage treatment of oral cancer is highly successful. Our dentists at 209 NYC Dental are highly trained doctors, specializing in the mouth and its diseases. We care about your teeth and even more about you. Please don’t hesitate to make an appointment and reaffirm your good oral health.

About Dr. Steven Kafko

Guided by the belief that being a highly skilled specialist in a narrow field is better than being ordinary in everything Dr. Kafko has grown 209 NYC Dental into one of the leading NYC multi-specialty dental practices that it is today. Having extensive cross-specialty training with decades of experience, and strive to provide his patients with the most appropriate dental care Dr. Kafko succeeded in becoming an excellent diagnostic dentist. His skills to triage the most comprehensive dental treatment that a patient may require are highly appreciated by patients and his colleagues.

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