It is estimated that close to 54,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or oropharyngeal cancer in 2022. These cancers can occur in the tongue, the tonsils, the lips, and other areas of the mouth and throat. While specialized medical care is needed for cancer treatment, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk. Here are some ways to help fight oral cancer naturally and stay healthier overall!
Know and Manage the Risk Factors
Do you use tobacco? Would you consider yourself a heavy drinker? Have you had an HPV (human papillomavirus) infection? These are some of the possible risk factors for oral cancer. (It is still possible to get oral cancer without these conditions.) Talk with your doctor if you have concerns. Also, know that there are resources available if you need help with challenges such as quitting smoking.
Eat More Veggies and Fruits
Skip the fried food and processed meats – and instead opt for more fruits and vegetables in your everyday diet. These healthier choices can be rich in antioxidants, which can help fight harmful free radicals in the body and prevent them from damaging the body’s cells.
Avoid Excessive Sun Exposure on Your Lips
When you’re heading to the beach or to any outdoor activity, don’t forget to protect your lips. Excessive exposure to the sun can cause lip cancer. Therefore, it’s important to look out for your lips by using a lip product with SPF protection, wearing a wide-brimmed hat, and/or staying out of the sun.
Take Good Care of Your Teeth
It has been found that people with periodontal disease (gum disease) can be at increased risk of oral cancer. Periodontal disease is a gum infection that can be caused by poor oral hygiene and is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. In order to reduce your risk of periodontal disease, remember to brush your teeth twice a day and floss once a day.
See Your Dentist Regularly
Dentists can help protect against oral cancer in more than one way. First, they can help you keep your teeth clean and help prevent or manage periodontal disease. Also, oral cancer screening at regular dental appointments can help diagnose oral cancer earlier, when it is easier to treat. During this screening, your dentist will usually ask you to stick out your tongue, and will check the inside of your mouth – as well as your neck and throat – for possible abnormalities.
Oral cancer can be life threatening, but with early detection it has an 84% survival rate. Different treatment options can include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and immunotherapy.
Dentistry and Oral Cancer Screening in Clifton, NJ
Here at Paramount Dental Arts, we provide thorough oral cancer screenings for every patient at every dental appointment. Our team is committed to ensuring your oral health, while also helping you achieve and maintain a confident smile. Call 973-777-1772 today to schedule an appointment, or request an appointment online.