What is mouth cancer?
Cancer in simple words is uncontrolled tissue growth. Cancer starts when DNA of the cell develops a malfunction. DNA instructs the cell to grow and reproduce and in cancer there is an uncontroable of cells leading to tumor. In the normal process a cell grows, reproduces and dies but in cancer it only grows and multiplies. Mouth cancer is a cancer happening in the mouth or the oral cavity. Cancer develops in any of the tissues of the mouth like tongue, cheeks, roof of the mouth, etc. As in cancer cells multiply and grow they form lesions which grow into a lump called tumor. Tumors are not always cancerous; they are cancerous only when they are malignant. The malignant tumors spread and encroach over the neighboring tissues. Learn more about mouth cancer and what mouth cancer here is.
Mouth Cancer symptoms and treatment
The cancer of mouth occurs in men twice more than the women and can occur at any age but generally happens in age group of more than forty-five. The mouth cancer begins as white or red patches or sores that do not heal for more than fourteen days. In many cases mouth cancer begins as ‘Sub mucous fibrosis’ a condition where mouth does not open completely and the patient cannot eat anything spicy. These types of symptoms are very common in India.
Risk factors of mouth cancer
Tobacco is the main risk factor associated with mouth cancer throughout the world. A person using tobacco in any form viz. chewing tobacco, cigerettes, cigars, pipes, snuff, etc is prone to mouth cancer and cancers of other parts of body. Other risk factors of mouth cancer include alcohol, exposures to ultra violet light, chewing beetle nut and HPV infection. Frequent alcohol users are susceptible to get mouth cancers. Ultra violet light from sun can cause cancer of lips and people exposed to sunlight are not only prone to lips cancer but cancer of any part of the skin. Age factor and sex of the patient also plays a role in development of mouth cancer.
Diagnosis of mouth cancer
When a person has patches of white or red colors on the lining of the mouth or mouth ulcers that are not healing from over 14 days; he should consult a doctor as these are the primary symptoms of mouth cancer. A lump developing on any part inside the mouth, swelling in the mouth, loosening of teeth, stiffness in jaws and jaw pain, sore throat and hoarse voice are some of the symptoms associated with mouth cancers.
There are many ways for the diagnosis of the mouth cancer. In the beginning the doctors look for visual examination and basic symptom analysis of mouth cancer. After physical examination the confirmatory tests are done by ‘tissue biopsy’ in which a sample of small part of the affected tissue is sent for lab examination. Tissue biopsy is the confirmatory test for mouth cancer.
Treatment of mouth cancer
Once the mouth cancer is diagnosed the immediate treatment of mouth cancer is mandatory as it can spread rapidly. Removal of the affected tissue by surgical procedure is the main line of treatment of mouth cancer. Radiation therapy is used along with surgery if necessary to treat mouth cancer. Chemotherapy is another treatment given to a patient of mouth cancer and is very effective. After the treatment rehabilitation techniques are required to improve the movements of the mouth.