The risk of mortality from oral cancer is exceptionally high due to the fact that the cancer is often detected late in it's development. It is estimated that 48 000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer this year alone. It is important for everyone to start doing oral cancer self-exams at home. It is recommended to perform a self-exam once a month. The following is a list of areas to check each month:
1) The inside of the lips and front of the gums
2) The roof of the mouth
3) The insides of the cheek and the backs of the gums
4) The top, sides and underneath the tongue
5) Along the length of your neck on all sides
While performing a self-examination here's what to look for:
1) White patches of any of the oral tissues
2) Red patches of any of the oral tissues
3) Any sores that fail to heal or bleed easily
4) Any abnormal lump or thickening of the tissues of the mouth
5) A chronic sore throat or hoarseness to the voice
6) Difficulty chewing or swallowing
7) A mass or lump in the neck
Don't ignore any suspicious lumps or sores and if you find any make an appointment to have a an oral and maxillofacial surgeon take a look. The team at Face2Face Surgery is trained in the diagnosis and treatment of oral cancer. Early detection is the key!
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