Oral Cancer: Symptoms, Risk Factors, and Prevention

oral cancer


Oral cancer is one of the most common types of cancer prevalent in the world today. In addition to preventive measures, it is necessary to be attentive to any changes and signals sent by our body (for example, to bleeding). This will help to detect oral cancer in time.

Here are the types of oral cancer:

  • Carcinomas are on the inner lining of the mouth
  • Adenocarcinomas are located in glandular cells

It is important to know the possible symptoms and ways to prevent the formation of a tumor. If this disease gets diagnosed at an early stage, then the chances of successful treatment without surgery are very high.

Oral Cancer And Its Main Symptoms

Oral cancer is a common wound that for some reason does not heal. Here are some obvious symptoms; however, these are just not the only ones:

  • Unexplained bleeding
  • Difficulty chewing, problems with jaw mobility
  • Hoarseness or voice change
  • White spots in the mouth
  • Loss of sensation or pain in any part of the mouth, face, or neck
  • The appearance of lumps in the lips, gums, or other parts of the mouth
  • Unexplained ear pain

Many of these symptoms can appear for other reasons as well. However, if you notice 2 or 3 of the above at once, it is better not to postpone going to the doctor and undergo the necessary examinations.

Risk Factors

Oral cancer develops under the influence of certain factors. However, the disease can also occur in people who are not included in the risk group, it is important to monitor your health and be especially careful if you:

1. Drink Alcohol Frequently

Excessive alcohol consumption is another reason for the development of oral cancer. Do you often drink alcoholic beverages? And do you smoke too? Then you should check your mouth frequently for any symptoms. After all, the risk of developing malignant tumors increases significantly. Experts believe that the chances of developing oral cancer increase if a person smokes along with drinking.

Thus, a person must get rid of the bad habit of drinking by consulting professional help. And no matter where you reside in the US, help is available around the corner. For example, those living in Las Vegas can consult any rehab in Las Vegas to overcome addiction and improve the quality of their lives.

2. Smoke

The exact causes of oral cancer are unknown. But smoking is one of the most influential factors stimulating the development of this disease. In 60% of cases, smokers are associated with the appearance of cancer of the oral cavity.

Chewing tobacco also irritates, as it has direct contact with the tissues of the mucous membranes. Smoking negatively affects overall health and can cause many other diseases too. Thus, to avoid inconvenience a person must get rid of this bad habit.

3. Oral Cancer In Relatives

Family history is another risk factor. If one of your relatives had experienced oral cancer, you should be especially attentive to yourself. Try to get checked out by your doctor at least once a year. Tell your dentist if you have a history of cancer in your family.

Such examinations play an important role in the early diagnosis of the disease. The dentist can see areas of the mouth that are not visible to you. In addition, you can always ask your doctor if you need to take any additional measures: get tested, undergo an examination, etc.

4. Suffer From Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Most people still believe that sexually transmitted diseases are either HIV or AIDS. These are the most serious, we do not argue. But there are others that you should not overlook either. One such disease is the human papillomavirus (HPV). It has many subtypes (not all of them are deadly). It is enough to take a Pap smear (cytological smear) once a year to rule out possible problems.

Oral Cancer: Prevention

For the prevention of oral cancer and the successful fight against it, it is important:

  • Pay close attention to any changes and the above symptoms
  • When brushing your teeth, pay attention to bleeding and wounds that do not heal for a long time (10-15 days)
  • In time to notice frequent sore throats, hoarseness or voice changes, as well as difficulty in moving the jaw
  • Adhere to a balanced diet
  • Do not smoke or chew tobacco
  • Drink alcoholic beverages in moderation

Oral Problems That Indicate Other Diseases

Sometimes the oral problem may indicate other health problems. If you feel that your teeth are slightly loose, you may have periodontitis. If there is no infection in the oral cavity, a similar problem may be due to osteoporosis.

1. Pain In The Teeth Or Jaw

If the pain appears in the lower jaw, and later you experience weakness and chest pains extending into the arms, this may indicate an impending heart attack. Front teeth can be bothered by sinusitis, a disease that develops due to inflammation of the sinuses.

Sinusitis is often accompanied by headaches and painful sensations in the jaw and teeth. Most often, a toothache occurs due to tension in the jaw muscles when we clench our jaw too hard during sleep.

2. Mouth Ulcers

The most common diseases that cause problems such as mouth ulcers are aphthae, herpes, leukoplakia, or candidiasis (a fungal infection). In each case, the causes of soreness in the mouth are different. That is why it is so important to be attentive to these symptoms, because such signs may indicate various diseases and infections.

3. Smell From The Mouth

In 90% of cases, the cause of halitosis (bad breath) must be sought in the oral cavity. It occurs due to bacteria that reside on the underside of the tongue and gum disease. In the remaining 10% of cases, halitosis gets provoked by diseases of the internal organs. So you should be alert if bad breath appears suddenly. This can be a sign of type 2 diabetes, as well as diseases of the liver, kidneys, and intestines.


To keep your oral health in check to prevent serious health problems, such as cancer, it’s important to understand the symptoms and risk factors of oral cancer.

Prevention goes a long way to prevent oral cancer. This includes living a healthy and balanced lifestyle by avoiding potential causation factors such as smoking, drinking, etc.

If you suspect you might have oral cancer, schedule an appointment with your doctor right away. It’s possible you have cancer but chances are your issue is something else.

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