We all know that smoking can cause oral cancer. But, what are some of the other causes that can put you at risk? April is oral cancer awareness month and Edwards Family Dental wants you to know if you are at risk. Did you know that smoking while drinking alcohol increases your risk? Did you know that poor diet has been linked to oral cancer? The following is a list of the leading causes of oral cancer.
RISK FACTORS FOR ORAL CANCER:
SMOKING- Almost two thirds of oral cancer cases can be linked to smoking. A morning cigarette can double your chances of getting the disease. By quitting smoking now, you can reduce your risk of getting oral cancer by one third.
SMOKELESS TOBACCO- Smokeless tobacco can increase the chances of getting oral cancer by 15 times!
DRINKING ALCOHOL- Drinking alcohol in excess puts you at risk for oral cancer. Drinking alcohol in excess and smoking cigarettes can increase your risk of getting oral cancer by 30 times!
SUN EXPOSURE- Exposure to the sun can increase your chances of oral cancer on the border of the lip.
POOR DIET- A poor diet has been linked to oral cancer diagnosis.
PERIODONTAL DISEASE- The risk of oral cancer goes up with periodontal disease and is more likely in people who are missing 6 or more teeth.
HPV- Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) is a leading cause of oral cancer and is estimated to overtake smoking as THE leading cause of oral cancer in the near future.
BE SURE that you are getting an oral cancer screening every time you visit the dentist. We are all at more risk than was thought in the past. If you think that you may be at a higher risk or if you are unsure if you have been screened for oral cancer be sure to speak up and ask your dentist. The screening only takes a couple of minutes and can save your life.
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