Oral cancer is a serious, and often deadly, disease that affects thousands of Americans each year. While this is a prominent disease among tobacco users, non-tobacco users can also be affected by this disease. Any cancer diagnosis can be scary news to receive. Even with all of the advancements in treatments, cancer has a high death rate throughout the world. Knowing the signs and symptoms of oral cancer is incredibly important and can help to save your life. The deadliest cases occur when people miss the earliest signs of the disease and do not seek treatment until it is too late.
Understanding that your oral cavity consists of more than just your mouth is one of the first steps in knowing the signs and symptoms of oral cancer. The oral cavity is made up of the lips, teeth, gums, cheeks, palate, floor of the mouth, throat, and sinuses. Knowing this allows you to have a broader view of your oral health, helping you to catch anything suspicious.
Below are common signs and symptoms or oral cancer:
- Any type of lump, bump, or growth anywhere in the oral cavity
- Rough or crusty spots inside the mouth or throat
- White, red, or speckled patches on the lips, mouth, or throat
- Persistent sores in the oral cavity
- Unexplained bleeding inside the mouth
- Unexplained numbness in the lips, tongue, or throat
- A “clogged” feeling in your throat that you cannot clear
- A change in the sound of your voice
- Chronic hoarseness
- Chronic sore throat
- Ear pain
- Dentures that no longer fit properly
- Dramatic weight loss
As you can see from the list above, not all signs and symptoms of oral cancer are obvious. Ear pain, sore throat, or weight loss are not what you would typically think of when trying to identify oral cancer, yet with the inner-connection of the oral cavity, the symptoms are much more far-reaching than many assume.
Contact Crabapple Dental today with any of your oral health care concerns.