The root cause of any form of cancer lies in malfunctioning DNA in cells. DNA is responsible for instructing the functionality of a cell. When this malfunction, cells grow and divide abnormally, forming lumps or tumors.
Although scientists are still not sure how DNA malfunctions, there have been certain identified risk factors that lead to cancer. In the case of oral cancer, these risks have been identified as the following:
6 Causes of Oral Cancer
- Tobacco: Tobacco is the leading cause of many forms of cancers- lung, oral, brain, throat. Just to name a few. Even smokeless tobacco can cause cancer. This means that you have a habit of chewing tobacco products, you do stand a chance at getting mouth cancer.
- Poor oral health: Poor oral health is believed to damage cells in the mouth and subsequently gives way to mouth cancer.
- Alcohol: Excess consumption can also lead to mouth cancer or other forms of cancer. Alcohol is believed to be one of the leading agents to kill DNA in cells.
- Excessive exposure to sunlight can also cause oral cancer. Sunlight does have a little amount of UV rays that are known to cause cancer. Usually, cancer cells develop on the lips as a result of excessive exposure to UV rays.
- A family history of cancer can also lead to any form of cancer, including oral cancer. This is why you should opt for periodic oral cancer screenings if your family does have a history of cancer.
- Human Papilloma Virus (HPV): HPV is a sexually transmitted virus that is known to cause cancer. It is primarily responsible for Oropharyngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma.
Symptoms of oral cancer
If you suspect oral cancer, look for the following common symptoms:
- Drastic weight loss
- Bleeding gums
- Lump or patches in the mouth
- Persistent bad taste or breath
- Loose teeth
- Unexplained numbness in certain areas in the mouth
- Eroding lips
- Pain in the ears
- Pain in the jaws
- Speech difficulties
- Sore throat and mouth
- Swollen gums
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Difficulties in chewing and eating
There could be other symptoms of oral cancer as well. However, these are the most common signs of oral cancer and if you even have one of these symptoms, get an oral cancer screening in Pinson AL 35126, today!