Mouth Cancer

Cristobal Coria

mouth cancer

A new study from the US finds people who drink more than 4 cups of caffeinated coffee a day have half the risk of dying from oral/pharyngeal (mouth and throat) cancer as people who drink it either occasionally or not at all.

The cancer can sometimes be spotted early during a routine exam by a doctor, dentist, or dental hygienist, and some dentists and doctors suggest you look at your mouth in a mirror at least once a month to check for symptoms.

The most common symptoms are a mouth sore that fails to heal, or a pain in the mouth that doesn't go away.

The biggest risks for developing oral/pharyngeal cancer are tobacco and alcohol use. Most people who have it are tobacco users.

what can you do to prevent mouth cancer?

  • Making healthy lifestyle choices can help prevent cancer, or keep it from developing in the first place. This includes things like eating healthy, getting exercise, and quitting smoking.
  • Screening tests can help doctors to find cancer early, when it is easier to treat.

who is most likely to get mouth cancer?

According to the Illinois State Cancer Registry, about 1,480 new cases of oral and pharyngeal cancer will be diagnosed in Illinois in 2008 . Of these, about 1,040 will be in men and about 440 will be in women. About 350 Illinoisans are expected to die of oral and pharyngeal cancer in 2008. Oral cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer in African-American men.

what increases the risk of mouth cancer?

  • Tobacco use of any kind, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco and snuff, among others
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • Excessive sun exposure to your lips
  • A sexually transmitted virus called human papillomavirus (HPV)

What fundraisers are there to promote awareness of the cancer?