Dentists push for greater mouth awareness as 1 in 10 don’t know the symptoms of mouth cancer

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Dentists across the UK are trying to raise awareness of mouth cancer, as research suggests that 1 in 10 people don’t know the symptoms or causes of the disease.

Most people are aware of forms of cancer such as testicular, prostate, cervical and breast cancer, but it’s very rare to see anything on TV or any charity events dedicated to mouth cancer. Many people are unaware that it even exists, despite the fact that the number of cases diagnosed in the UK has risen by over a third in the last decade alone. Did you know that oral cancer kills more people than cervical and testicular cancer combined?

November is Mouth Cancer Action Month and dentists up and down the country are doing their bit to try and encourage more people to take notice of oral cancer and try and be more mouth aware. The main risk factors for mouth cancer include drinking, smoking and HPV infection. If you drink and smoke, you’re more than 30 times more likely to develop oral cancer.

Signs and symptoms to look out for include red or white patches in the mouth, any abnormal lumps or swelling in the mouth or throat, difficulty swallowing, persistent or unexplained oral pain and ulcers that take a long time to heal.

Throughout November, dental practices will be handing out information about oral cancer and hosting free screening events. The campaign, which takes place every November, is run by the Oral Health Foundation.

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