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Mouth Cancer Action Month 2013

07 / 11 / 2013

‘Mouth Cancer Action Month’ runs in and through the month of November and is launched by the British Dental Health Foundation (BDHF). The aim is to improve the awareness of the risk factors, signs and symptoms of the disease in order to improve the survival rate of patients.

6500 new cases of mouth cancer are diagnosed every year. The disease kills more people in the UK than testicular and cervical cancer put together. Tobacco use, smoking, drinking alcohol to excess, the human papillomavirus (HPV) and a poor diet, are all risk factors for the disease.

  • Smoking, 1 in 5 people in the UK smoke and people are aware of the damage smoking does to their lungs but not too aware of the damage to their mouths.
  • Alcohol excess can increase mouth cancer risks by 4 times. Those who smoke and drink are up to 30 times more likely to develop the disease.
  • HPV, the Human papillomavirus is increasingly being linked to mouth cancer so younger people are also at risk.
  • Poor Diet, half of the cases of mouth cancer are thought to be linked with an unhealthy diet. It’s recommended that people eat a healthy, balanced diet, rich in anti-oxidants with five daily fruits and veg. Evidence suggests that Omega 3 rich foods and high in fibre foods can help to lower the risks.

The message to the public is if in doubt, get checked out. The good news is 90% of people survive if the disease is detected early and regular dental check-ups increase the chances of any detection.

The dentists at our Bexleyheath practice do check for oral cancer for all our patients at their routine dental check up. If your check up is over due you can call our practice to book your appointment.

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