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Preventable Oral Cancer Risk Factors
Oral cancer can be very difficult to treat if it is not identified in its early stages. Regular oral cancer screenings are important because they can help in detecting the disease early. But a person should also make changes that can lower the chances of getting oral cancer. Read on to learn more about the risk factors for oral cancer.
Risk factors for oral cancer
A risk factor refers to anything that may increase someone’s chances of having a disease. The exact cause of a person’s cancer may not be known. However, risk factors can make it more likely for an individual to have cancer. But people should know that even though they increase an individual’s risk, risk factors do not necessarily cause the disease.
Particular risk factors, like family history and age, may not be in a person’s control. But other factors may be things that people can change or improve on. Individuals should be aware of the risk factors of cancer and make choices that may lower their risk. When it comes to oral cancer, some preventable risk factors include excessive drinking, poor nutrition, and tobacco use.
Cigarettes, pipe tobacco, snuff, cigars, and chewing tobacco all make it more likely for people to develop some form of oral cancer. The risk depends on the frequency as well as the duration of tobacco use. A majority of people with oral cancers smoke cigarettes. Tobacco smoke from cigars, pipes, or cigarettes can cause cancers anywhere in the throat or mouth.
It can also cause other types of cancers. These include cancers of the lungs and kidneys. Individuals who use snuff have a greater risk of cancer in the lips, gums, and cheeks. Pipe smokers have a high risk for lip cancers.
Most people diagnosed with the disease are heavy drinkers. Drinking two or more alcoholic drinks each day increases the risk of getting oral cancer. The risk is even higher for individuals who use both tobacco and alcohol. They are more likely to develop oral cancer than their counterparts who do not drink or smoke.
The good thing is that oral cancer is a highly preventable disease. But this may require people to make lifestyle changes and stop or reduce things that might put them at a greater risk. Individuals who use tobacco should quit. Limiting alcohol consumption will also help. Not eating enough vegetables and fruits can also increase the risk for oral cancer. This is why eating lots of vegetables and fruits is encouraged.
One of the things you can do to prevent oral cancer is to avoid unhealthy habits like smoking and chewing tobacco. It is equally as important to limit your alcohol consumption and to eat healthy foods. Having regular oral screening can help in the early detection and treatment of oral cancer. If you are interested in oral cancer screenings, call your dentist to schedule an appointment.
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