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9 January 2018

Awareness and action are key to minimising the risks.

You may have noticed recently, quite a large number of articles in the media about oral cancer. It is quite possible though, that unless you read our Surbiton dental blogs regularly, you may have never even heard of this form of cancer before.

Unfortunately, oral cancers are on the increase and are forecast to rise even further, with men currently thought to be twice as likely as women to suffer from this. It is expected that around ten thousand people will die of it this year.

Should you be worried? We would say that there should be no major concern providing that you follow some straightforward advice. Of course, this doesn’t guarantee against all possibility of having oral cancer, but it will significantly reduce the risks.

Good oral care

It all starts with good oral health care, both in the way that you maintain your teeth and gums, but also in how we treat our health. Below, we list a few things that you should do to make sure that you are at minimal risk of this potentially fatal disease.

Stop smoking

Smoking is by far the biggest cause of this type of cancer, and stopping smoking, will greatly reduce the risks. With the price of cigarettes and the anti social aspect of it now widely accepted, this is a good time to finally break the habit.

Alcohol

Like smoking, alcohol can contribute significantly towards oral health problems. Whilst the occasional glass of wine or bottle of beer should do little harm, regular or heavy drinking will increase the risk of all types of cancers, including mouth cancers.

HPV

The HPV virus (human papillomavirus) is transmitted through oral sex and is thought to be one of the reasons that mouth cancers are on the increase. There have been calls for the HPV vaccination to be widely distributed, but, if you are sexually active, it is worth discussing this vaccination with your GP. It could save your life.

Your oral health care

Finally, good old fashioned teeth cleaning and regular dental checks are essential in the fight against oral cancer. Regular cleaning will help to reduce potentially harmful bacteria in the mouth, whilst having your mouth checked by the local dentist at the Confidental Clinic means that any potential symptoms that you may have can be detected early, and, if confirmed to be oral cancer, will enable you to receive early treatment for the best outcome.

If you would like to know more about oral cancer, or would like to have an oral health check at our Surbiton practice, please call the Confidental Clinic on 020 8399 1291.

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