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Do I Need to Be Screened for Oral Cancer?

For many years, it has been assumed that oral cancer was really only a danger for older men who were lifelong smokers. While smoking greatly increases your risk of cancer and oral cancer does tend to be most common in men, virtually everyone should be screened annually at their dentist’s to rule out the possibility of the disease. In fact, more and more people (including women) between the ages of 25-50 are being diagnosed with oral cancer because they didn’t realize they were at risk. In this week’s blog, learn why it is so important that everyone over the age of 25 visit their dentist for an oral cancer screening.

oral cancer

Even if you don’t think you’re at risk of oral cancer, you should still get checked annually.

I’m young and I don’t smoke. Why should I worry about oral cancer?

While oral cancer was often seen as the realm of the aged, it has become surprisingly common in younger adults in recent years. This is due in large part to the fact that younger people don’t realize they need to be screened and so they may go years before cancerous cells are detected. Early detection will greatly improve the chances of having a good outcome, so even if you don’t think you are at risk it is still important to get checked out regularly.

Why is oral cancer becoming more common in young adults?

The number one cause of oral cancer is lifestyle choices such as smoking. However, the human pappilomavirus (HPV) has also been recently linked to an increased risk of oral cancer and it is incredibly common among young adults. In fact, it is estimated that up to 75% of sexually active adults have some strain of HPV and about 33,000 new cancer cases are found in areas affected by HPV. In addition to oral cancer, HPV can cause other forms of cancer as well, particularly cervical cancer in young women. Even if you don’t think you are at risk because you don’t smoke, you should still be screened annually to rule out the possibility. By getting checked routinely, you can rest easy knowing that you have all the information you need about your overall oral health.

Get In Touch With Olney Dental Today

Interested in learning more about how dentistry can make your smile happier? Call Olney Dental at (301) 250-1057 or contact us online for an appointment. And don’t forget to visit Facebook,  Twitter, Google+,Pinterest, and YouTube to connect with us on social media

This entry was posted on Thursday, May 19th, 2016 at . Both comments and pings are currently closed.