Oral Cancer Awareness Month

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month and dental associations urge the public to get regular oral cancer screenings, and to self-check between examinations.

It is recommended to regularly self-check for signs and symptoms of oral cancer between dental visits, and to see a dental professional if you have symptoms that do not improve or disappear after two-three weeks.

Some of the most common symptoms and signs of oral cancer include:

  • Patches inside your mouth or on your lips that are white, a mixture of red and white, or red.
  • A sore on your lip or in your mouth that won’t heal.
  • Bleeding in your mouth.
  • Loosening of the teeth.
  • Difficulty or pain when swallowing, chewing, speaking or moving the jaw or tongue.
  • Swelling of your jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable.
  • A lump or growth in your throat or neck.
  • Pain, tenderness, or numbness on the lips, tongue, or elsewhere in the mouth.
  • Hoarseness or other changes in your voice.
  • Cough or sore throat that will not go away, or the feeling that something is caught in the throat that does not go away.
  • An earache.

Early detection saves lives!