Are Seniors More At Risk For Oral Cancer?

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oral cancer

Odds of having oral cancer do enhance with age. As per a research by American Cancer Society (ACS), among all those who are afflicted by oral cancer, those over the age of 65 make half the patients.

So the older that an individual is, the more he is at a risk of getting oral cancer. It hence becomes even more important to take care of oral health with aging.

At times, lesions on the tongue may indicate that one is suffering from oral cancer. Therefore if you come to realize that there is a lesion on the tongue or towards the inside of the mouth, it is best to consult with a dentist straightaway.

Let us take a look at the factors that put one at a higher risk of getting afflicted by oral cancer.

Smoking and use of tobacco put one at a higher risk of getting afflicted by oral cancer. 90% of people who develop oral cancer use tobacco. Similarly, smokers are six times more likely as compared to non smoker for developing oral cancer.

Use of alcohol is also associated with development of oral cancer. 75% of people who develop oral cancer consume alcohol frequently.

Let us take a look at the most common signs to look out for, for oral cancer.

The starting is seldom more than a white or a red spot in the mouth. One must get in touch with a dentist with an immediate effect if one realizes that

  • chewing and swallowing food, or speaking become more difficult
  • movement of jaw or tongue is affected
  • the bite or the teeth shift
  • A sore bleeds and doesn’t heal
  • Numbness, tenderness or pain
  • Lump or a rough patch in mouth
  • Color of the mouth changes

There are ways to minimize the risk of oral cancer. The best way of going about it is by keeping healthy and keeping the awareness levels high about health.

  • Quit smoking
  • Safeguard your lips from lip cancer. Protect them against sun by using a lip balm. Wear a sunscreen as well
  • Keep your diet healthy and balanced
  • Go for dental examinations at regular intervals. Make sure that they include screening for oral cancer.
  • Check your mouth at home frequently. If you come to discover something distinct from regular, consult with a dentist.

A dentist would use certain exams to identify if there is a case of oral cancer. One such examination is the VELscope.

In the event that your dentist finds an abnormality, he would send your tissues to a lab for testing.

If he then comes to figure out that you are suffering from cancer, he can start up with the treatment immediately.

Let us now take a short overview of oral cancer:

Oral cancer can be of various types. It includes cancer of lip, salivary glands, tongue, gum or floor of the mouth. It can also occur in unspecified parts of the mouth.

Incidence of oral cancer increases by the year and mortality has been nearly been the same for past quarter of a century. This is also because people tend to live longer and seniors are more vulnerable to getting afflicted by oral cancer.

With research over oral cancer, diagnosis will be early and adversity of effects will reduce.

Treatment of cancer involves chemotherapy and gene therapy. Prevention stays to be the most important aspect of cancer, and by educating the patient over the same, it is possible to reduce lifestyle risk habits and environmental factors alike.

Among all types of cancers, oral cancer is the sixth most common type of cancer. It is also one of the prime contributors for cancer related mortality. Men are more vulnerable to oral cancer as compared to women. It is more prevalent in developing countries as compared to developed countries. Apart from use of tobacco and alcohol, poor oral hygiene is the top contributing factors for the condition. Chronic viral infections also come across as one of the prime causes for oral cancer.

Early detection of oral cancer simplifies treatments and increases odds of full recovery. Regular dental checkups can be very helpful in this regard.

One must stay well informed about any dental surgeon in vicinity and the nearest dental clinic. You can consult with the nearest dentist for signs of oral cancer, or periodic dental checkups.