12th November 2019

Are You Mouth Aware? Mouth Cancer Awareness Month

November is mouth cancer awareness month and it is estimated that around 600 people will be diagnosed with mouth cancer in the UK this month alone. With figures of mouth cancer cases expected to rise over the coming years, it is important that we are all mouth aware in order to identify any signs or symptoms as and when they appear.

Early detection typically results in a 90 survival rate, so getting symptoms checked out as quickly as possible is vital. Having regular dental checkups, as well as carrying out self-examinations, will help to highlight any changes in and around your mouth.

Mouth Cancer Awareness

How To Spot Mouth Cancer

Mouth cancer does not discriminate and can affect everyone, but typically it is associated with men over the age of 40. However, we all should be paying close attention to what is going on inside our mouths and, should we spot any unexplained or unusual changes, take urgent action. Mouth cancer can strike in a number of different areas, such as the gums, cheeks, lips and tongue and, given that early detection is crucial, being mouth aware and knowing the warning signs will increase your chances of survival.

Three signs and symptoms which you absolutely should not ignore are:

  • Ulcers which do not heal within 3 weeks
  • Red and/or white patches in the mouth
  • Unusual swelling or lumps in the mouth, neck or head area

If you spot any of these symptoms, then you should see your dentist or doctor immediately. If in doubt, get checked out. Mouth cancer can be spotted in the early stages by visiting your dentist for a thorough mouth examination.

Reducing Your Risk Of Mouth Cancer

Although mouth cancer is strongly associated with men over 40, lifestyle also plays a huge role in developing mouth cancer. Around 9 in 10 cases are linked to lifestyle risk factors, such as alcohol and smoking. The influence which our daily habits and choices have on our overall health is huge, but by amending them and making small changes towards healthier day-to-day choices, you can help to reduce your chance of developing mouth cancer.

When it comes to mouth cancer awareness, there are five key risks which you should be aware of:

Tobacco – this is the leading cause of mouth cancer and transforms saliva into a deadly cocktail which damages cells in your mouth, which can then turn cancerous.

Alcohol – Excessive alcohol consumption is linked to over a third of mouth cancer cases in men and a fifth in women. Heavy smokers and drinkers are up to 35 times more at risk of developing mouth cancer.

HPV (the Human papillomavirus) – the world’s most common sexually-transmitted virus is increasingly being linked to the rise of mouth cancer cases and is expected to become one of the leading causes of the disease in the future.

Diet – Research has shown that a diet which is high in fresh fruit and vegetables can reduce the risk of developing mouth cancer in the future.

Chewing or Smokeless Tobacco – Smokeless and chewing tobacco is not a safer alternative to traditional cigarettes, contrary to popular belief, and is very popular in Asia, USA and Europe.

Be Mouth Aware

There are more than 8,300 people diagnosed with mouth cancer each year in the UK and, in many cases, can have a lasting and substantial impact on the quality of life, even affecting how you talk, breathe and eat. Being mouth aware is vital and, as well as attending regular check-ups with your dentist, you can also carry out frequent checks for changes in your mouth, head and neck at home. Even if you have no teeth, it is vital that you regularly check for changes in the mouth.

  • Look for red, white or dark patches on the inside of your cheeks. Put your index finger inside your cheek and your thumb on the outside. Gently squeeze to feel for any ulcers, lumps or tenderness.
  • Look for any changes in colour or texture on the surface of your tongue and check the sides for swelling or ulcers.
  • Run your finger along the roof and floor of your mouth, checking for any lumps or ulcers.
  • Pull down on your lower lip and check for any sores or changes in colour. Use your thumb and index finger to feel for any lumps or changes in texture.

Mouth cancer can affect anybody, so it is important that we know what to check for. If you have any worries or concerns about changes in your mouth, or would just like to book a check-up, then get in touch today. Or call our reception on 01925 756565.

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Mike White
Mike White
2024-01-29
The best experience. When you step through the door you are met by the friendliest receptionist,Which continues through the practice. If you want the best dental care and treatments across the board this is where you need to go.
Charlotte Bell
Charlotte Bell
2023-12-15
I came to dental solutions with severe anxiety of dentists and Lauren was so helpful, kind and patient with me. For the first time in years I've found a dentist who I feel comfortable with. Thank you
Gill S
Gill S
2023-10-27
I had a wisdom tooth extracted by Gavin after having toothache due to my tooth breaking. I was nervous as I had not had a tooth removed by injection before. Gavin was reassuring, explained the procedure fully and it was over quickly with no pain. All staff at the practice are caring, friendly and professional and I have been going for many years. I highly recommend Dental Solutions.
K.WEDGE
K.WEDGE
2023-09-06
Thank you to Gavin and team at Dental Solutions for the superb dental work done yesterday. As well as being highly professional and very good at what they do the place has a great atmosphere which makes going to the dentist a pleasure.
tracy grensinger
tracy grensinger
2023-07-02
Amazing experience. I felt in safe friendly professional hands with all the team . Thank you!
Zoe Manley
Zoe Manley
2023-06-30
Can’t speak highly enough of this practice and in particular Lauren. 2 years ago I walked in and was so nervous I cried just as the sight of the chair. Her and the staff have been so patient and understanding and have worked with me to overcome my phobia. This week I had a filling and was absolutely fine, my family couldn’t believe it. Reception staff are lovely and really accommodating too. So glad I found them, I don’t dread the dentist anymore.
David Partridge
David Partridge
2023-05-10
A really Five Star Dental Practice! Upon arrival I was greeted by their most friendly welcoming receptionists. it seems nothing is 'too much trouble' to them. Gavin is similarly very friendly and the surgery is kitted out with the most high-tech modern equipment. On my first visit Gavin examined my teeth and explained my options to me giving me his recommendation for treatment and reasons why. Their Co-ordinator prepared a detailed quote for my treatment and went through it in detail with me, ensuring I understood everything; she had plenty of time for me as a patient. From the outset I had complete confidence in entrusting them with my dental care and the final results are truly amazing. Gavin and Richard could not have been more professional and my treatment was made as painless as possible. Dental Solutions provide a truly outstanding service and I thank them for my new 'long lost' smile and renewed confidence, especially when dining out and talking with people. I can't recommend them too highly.
Carole Dodwell
Carole Dodwell
2023-05-08
A first class experience from start to finish. Despite being fearful of visiting the dentist, Gavin put me at ease with his gentle unhurried manner. I was surprised at how relaxed I actually felt undergoing treatment for a crown and the removal/replacement of front teeth veneers. Having felt self conscious about my front teeth for a long time, I decided to have my old veneers replaced. The results were amazing and far exceeded my expectations. What Gavin achieved was nothing short of a work of art, boosting my confidence tenfold. The practice itself is very welcoming, the customer service excellent and the staff are all very friendly and kind. I cannot recommend this dental practise highly enough.
Nick Halliwell
Nick Halliwell
2023-04-28
I recently needed some urgent treatment and after trying a couple of dentists in the area, dental solutions were the only dentist that agreed to see me, genuinely nobody else showed any interest in helping me. The receptionist I spoke to initially was super compassionate and understanding and did all she could to get me in asap. I saw Lauren for all of my appointments, and I’ve now had: a composite filling, root canal and emax crown and just yesterday had a wisdom tooth extracted. I don't know what Lauren does but I have had zero pain or discomfort with any treatments during and after. I'm extremely happy with the results of her work. She definitely knows her stuff and filled me with the utmost confidence whilst in the chair! I literally cant find any fault with any of the experiences I have had so far. They go the extra mile and do it with a smile. What more can you ask for?! Definitely my dentist for the foreseeable future! Thank you Lauren and everyone!
Pete Taberham
Pete Taberham
2023-04-07
Had my initial consultation with Lauren, truly professional and extremely friendly. She explained all my options in detail and following discussions opted for veneers and can't wait to see the end result.
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