What is World Cancer Day
Today, February 4th, is World Cancer Day. World Cancer Day was born on the 4 February 2000 at the World Summit Against Cancer for the New Millennium in Paris. The Paris Charter aims to promote research, prevent cancer, improve patient services, raise awareness, and mobilize the global community to make progress against cancer, and includes the adoption of World Cancer Day.
World Cancer Day is an initiative of the Union for International Cancer Control, the largest and oldest international cancer organization dedicated to taking the lead in convening, capacity building and advocacy initiatives that unite the cancer community to reduce the global cancer burden, promote greater equity, and integrate cancer control into the world health and development agenda.
On this day, individuals, organizations, and companies around the world come together to bring more awareness to cancer related issues, new finds in research, and general awareness.
Oral Cavity Cancers – What Is It and Risk Factors
One type of cancer we see the most of in our office, and have helped patients treat, are Oral Cavity Cancers. In our office, when a suspicious oral lesion is found, a biopsy is often used to detect or rule out oral cancer — a disease that is treatable if caught early. A biopsy involves removing a very small tissue sample for laboratory analysis.
There are generally three types of tumors that can develop in the oral cavity:
These are not cancer – they do no spread to other parts of the body or invade other tissues
Harmless growths that can turn into cancer overtime
These are growths that can spread to other parts of the body and grow into other tissues
While anyone is at risk for oral cancer, there are a few factors that can put individuals at a higher risk. 80% of oral cancer is linked to tobacco use – including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco and snuff. The best way to eliminate this risk is to cut out the use of tobacco products completely.
Poor nutrition and oral hygiene practices also can put an individual at a higher risk for oral cancer. Diet wise, be sure to include an ample amount of fruits and vegetables into your everyday diet. Additionally, practicing simple oral health habits such as proper brushing, flossing, and routine cleanings will reduce your risk of oral cancer.
A few other factors are gender, age, and exposure to UV light.
How to Diagnose
Early signs of oral cancer can seem like typical problems – such as a toothache or cold. If symptoms persist for several weeks or months, it is important to see your doctor so that, if oral cancer is present, it may be diagnosed as soon as possible
Some of the most common oral cancer symptoms and signs include:
Persistent mouth sore that does not heal
Persistent mouth pain
A lump or thickening in the cheek
A white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of the mouth
A sore throat or persistent feeling that something is caught in the throat
Difficulty swallowing or chewing
Difficulty moving the jaw or tongue
Numbness of the tongue or other area of the mouth
Jaw swelling that makes dentures hurt or fit poorly
Loosening of the teeth
Pain in the teeth or jaw
A lump in the neck
Persistent bad breath
If any of these symptoms appear or persist for weeks, your doctor may recommend tests to check for oral cancer. Here at Sharma Oral Surgery – we examine each patient and take a biopsy, if necessary, so we can treat the problem correctly and effectively.
Please call our office if you have any questions or concerns, 704-541-6070.