Understanding Mouth Cancer–Its Symptoms and Causes

Understanding Mouth Cancer–Its Symptoms and Causes


Written By: Poulami Saha | 05 April 2024

Have you ever noticed any painless red or white patches on your gums or tongue?
It may be a sign of oral cancer.
Studies show that 60% of cases are diagnosed in the late stage.

Oral cancer, also known as mouth cancer, is a cancer of the lining of the lips, mouth, or upper throat. This blog is all about the signs of mouth cancer, which can sometimes be very difficult to spot. Read on to know more.

What is Mouth Cancer?

Mouth cancer is a term that is used for cancer that develops in the oral cavity or its nearby areas. Oral cancer mostly occurs in people above the age of 40 and affects more than twice as many men as women. Most oral cancers start in the squamous cells that are present in the layer of tissue that lines your mouth and throat. Most of the time, the DNA changes inside these cells, causing the growth of something that we tend to call a tumor.

What are the Symptoms of Mouth Cancer?

If you want to keep yourself and your loved ones safe from this disease, all you need to do is keep an eye on all these given signs of mouth cancer so you can detect it early and get the needed treatment done.

1. A sore patch in your mouth, lip, or tongue
2. Red or white patches inside your mouth
3. Unexpected pain or discomfort in your mouth
4. A lump in your neck or tonsils
5. Issues in chewing, speaking, or swallowing
6. Mouth or ear pain
7. Unexpected weight loss
8. Unexplained bleeding in your mouth
9. Constant bad breath and a change of voice
10. Numbness in your tongue

What are the Top 5 Causes of Mouth Cancer?

Prevention is better than cure, so understanding these major causes of mouth cancer becomes important for early detection and proper treatment. Without further ado, let’s jump into the major causes of mouth cancer.
  1. 1. Poor oral hygiene
    Not giving enough attention to your oral health can cause mouth cancer to develop in your mouth.
  1. 2. Age
    The chances of you having mouth cancer increase when you reach the age of 40.
  1. 3. Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
    According to studies, certain strains of HPV are connected to mouth cancer.
  1. 4. Sun Exposure
    When you are exposed to the sun, you have a high risk of getting lip cancer.
  1. 5. Poor Nutrition
    A diet that lacks healthy fruits and vegetables increases the risk of mouth cancer.

What are the Treatments Available for Mouth Cancer?

Like any other cancer, mouth cancer also has many options of treatment available, depending on the seriousness of your case. The treatment can be surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or many other options.
  1. 1. Surgery
    Surgery is the most common treatment for mouth cancer. The process of surgery includes the removal of the tumor with the affected tissues and lymph nodes. The duration of the surgery depends on the location and seriousness of the cancer.
  1. 2. Radiation Therapy
    Radiation therapy is known as the most important treatment to eliminate any remaining cancer cells in your body. Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams to target cancer cells and destroy them. There can be a few side effects from radiation therapy, which can be fatigue, mouth sores, or even changes in taste.
  1. 3. ChemotherapyChemotherapy is the most known cancer treatment. In this, cancer cells are killed also slowing down the development of new cancer with the help of some prescribed drugs. Chemotherapy always works simultaneously with surgery or radiation therapy.
  1. 4. Targeted Therapy
    The most modern technology for cancer treatment is Targeted therapy. This kind of treatment only targets the cancer cells in the human body and keeps the healthy cells of the body safe from radiation. Targeted therapy is the most commonly used treatment in cases of mouth cancer.
  1. 5. Immunotherapy
    The immunotherapy treatment does not target the cancer cells directly, but it boosts the immune system of the body to destroy the existing cancer cells. Immunotherapy is useful in some cases of mouth cancer.

Key Takeaway

There is a high chance that the treatment of mouth cancer may affect your oral health. So, it is essential to focus on your oral health before starting any treatment for mouth cancer.
  • Visit a dentist at least a month before starting the oral hygiene treatment to give your mouth time to heal.
  • After your cancer treatment, do pay a regular visit to your dentist. This will help you prevent any side effects caused by your cancer treatment.
When it comes to opting for any dental treatment in Dubai, APEX Dental Clinic is just one appointment away.