Oral Cancer Awareness and Prevention Tips from Matsu Dental

Oral cancer is a real and potentially life-threatening condition that affects thousands of individuals each year. While implementing oral cancer prevention and early detection will improve the odds of successful treatment, as a leading dental practice in Wasilla, AK, at Matsu Dental, we believe that these are goals worth more than just a month of awareness, but believe it is our obligation to keep our patients educated in both oral cancer awareness and the benefits of preventive dental care. Oral cancer may be seen as a growth or sore in your mouth that does not go away. Oral cancer can form in the lips, tongue, cheeks, floor of the mouth, hard and soft palates, sinuses, or throat. Several symptoms of the oral cavity are to be aware of:

Painless, white patches in the mouth

A non-healing mouth sore or ulcer that does not heal after two weeks

Unexplained bleeding in the mouth

Persistent mouth pain

A lump or thickened area in the cheek

A white or reddish-colored patch found on the inside of the mouth

Problems with chewing or swallowing

Difficulty moving the jaw or tongue

Regular dental visits to Matsu Dental for check-ups and cleanings are essential for maintaining oral health and can play a vital role in the early detection of oral cancer. Your Wasilla, AK dentist can identify unusual signs during routine examinations that may be indicative of oral cancer or precancerous conditions.

Preventing oral cancer requires a multipronged approach. Along with the dental professionals at Matsu Dental, you can work to reduce your risk through:

Tobacco Cessation

The use of tobacco is one of the leading causes of oral cancer. This includes pipes, cigars, cigarettes, snuff, and chewing tobacco. You can reduce your risk for oral cancer by halting the use of tobacco products, and your healthcare provider can give you information about programs and services that may be of assistance.

Stop Alcohol Abuse

Alcohol abuse is another oral cancer risk factor. Decrease your risk by limiting your alcohol consumption. You must drink in moderation according to recommended guidelines.

Pucker Up – Protect Your Lips from the Sun

Yes, even your lips are susceptible to sun damage and cancer. Always use a lip balm that contains sun protection, at least SPF 30. Wear a hat with a wide brim to further protect your lips and face from ultraviolet (UV) sunlight and its harmful effects. Use a lip balm with sun protection on your children’s lips when they are outdoors, as reported by The Oral Cancer Foundation.

Eat Your Veggies and Fruits

Several studies have indicated that a diet high in fruits and vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of oral cancer. The natural antioxidants in these foods can help protect cells from becoming cancerous. Be sure to speak with our dentists in Wasilla, AK about nutrition and health tips for a healthy mouth – and a healthy body. They can offer individualized advice.

Maintain Good Oral Health

Good oral hygiene not only lessens your chance of cavities, periodontal disease, and other conditions, but contributes to a healthy mouth, and body. Be sure to brush at least twice daily, floss at least once daily, and use mouthwash to help maintain a clean mouth and minimize your risk of infections, which can contribute to cancer as was previously mentioned.

Benefit From Regular Dental Checkups

All cancers, including oral cancer, are easier to treat in the early stages, so regular trips to Matsu Dental for checkups are essential. Not to mention, neglecting your dental appointments—a key part of your preventive health strategy—could lead to oral health problems, such as tooth decay and gum disease.

Consider HPV Vaccination

Some forms of oral cancer are linked to human papillomavirus (HPV). Vaccination against HPV can help reduce the risk of many types of cancer, not just oral cancer, in both males and females. Ask your healthcare provider if the HPV vaccine is right for you or your family members,

In addition to preventive care, Matsu Dental offers an array of both standard and cosmetic dental services that can add to your overall oral health. Dental implants Wasilla AK and corrective treatments such as Invisalign Wasilla AK, let you restore oral function even if you’ve lost teeth, potentially because of oral cancer or another disease. Invisalign is a less visible alternative to braces and can correct problems such as teeth that are out of line and difficult to keep clean.

In the end, the significance of maintaining oral cancer awareness and prevention cannot be understated, and the team at Matsu Dental is here to help you understand the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth. If you have questions about oral cancer or are interested in learning more about preventive care, reach out to the team at Matsu Dental to schedule an appointment with an experienced dentist Wasilla, AK. Just remember, regular oral cancer screenings and early detection are your best defenses.