Someone dies from oral cancer every
hour in the U.S.
Facts About Oral Cancer
It is the 6th most common cancer
Oral Cancer in the United States
|Deaths per year:
|Five-year relative survival rate for
|Five year relative survival for all
Movie About Oral Cancer
- An estimated 30,200 new oral cancer cases
will be diagnosed this year.
(20,000 will be men)
- Although the percentage of deaths has
been decreasing since 1980, nearly 8,000 Americans die annually from oral
Cancer Society recommends an yearly
cancer related check-up for all people 40 years of age or older;
and every 3 years for people between 20-39 years of age. **
in combination with heavy alcohol
consumption (30+ drinks per week) is the primary (75%) risk factor for oral cancer.
Heavy smokers (more than one pack a day) are at a 24 times higher risk
for oral cancer. Smoking cigarettes, cigars or pipes, or using
chew or snuff tobacco are the greatest risk factors accounting for 80
to 90% of all oral cancers. However 25% of
all people diagnosed with oral cancer have none of these risk factors at
Oral cancer is more likely to strike
after the age of 50 however there has been a significant increase in oral cancer
in people under age 30.
- 25% of oral
cancer patients do not have any of the signs of the risk factors for
oral cancer. This makes having a dental
exam every 6 months a necessity to detect this cancer.
- Men's risk of being diagnosed with oral caner is twice that of women.
- 95% of oral cancer is diagnosed in people older than 45 years, with the
median age of diagnosis is 64 years.
- In the past
10 years there has been a considerable increase in the number of oral
cancer patients under the age of 30 who have no identifiable risk
factors of contracting he disease.
- African American men oral cancer is the 4th leading cancer for their
Pictures of Oral Cancer
- It has
one of the poorest 5 year survival rates. Only 52% survive
after 5 years of diagnoses. Radiation can not cure it, it can
help, along with chemotherapy. Surgery has devastating results due
to the loss of a part of one's tongue, jaw or roof of the mouth.
- Oral cancer affects 30,000 people a year.
It is very disfiguring. It
results in severe loss of oral function, chronic discomfort including difficulty
in chewing, swallowing and speaking
- Additional risk factors that may be
linked to oral cancer include: smokeless tobacco use; regular, prolonged
exposure to the sun (lip cancer).
- Studies suggest that a
diet high in
fruits and vegetables may help prevent the development of oral cancer lesions.
- Oral cancer can affect any area of the
oral cavity including the lips, gum tissues, cheek lining, tongue, and the hard
or soft palate.
The most frequent sites for cancer are the tongue, floor of the
mouth, tissues in back of the tongue, lips and gums.
- Mouth cancer
kills one person every five hours.
younger than 40 years of age are being diagnosed with higher rates of
oral and tongue cancer.*
represents about 2.5 percent of cancer cases and 1.5 percent of all
cancer-related deaths--a high rate considering the small size of the
mouth in relation to the rest of the body
- The five
year survival rate with oral cancer is directly related to the stage at
which the cancer is diagnosed, that is why early detection is so
- It is
important to visit your dentist twice a year to receive you oral
screening examination of our mouth for the early signs of oral
oral cancer in the very early stages is CRITICAL
Cancer Self Test
- Symptoms of oral cancer can include:
1) A sore that bleeds easily or does not
heal in two weeks
2) A change in color of the oral tissues;
3) A lump,
rough spot, crust or small eroded area;
4) Pain, tenderness, or numbness anywhere in the mouth or on the lips;
teeth or jaw
5) Difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking, or moving the jaw or tongue; or
6) A change in the way teeth fit together.
Swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly
white or red spots
Cancer Slide Show Pictures
- Regular visits to the dentist can
increase the chance of early detection, which can improve the potential for
detection of oral cancer increases the chance that a person will
be alive 5 years after diagnosis. The 5 years survival rate is
However, only 35% of oral cancer is detected at the earliest stage.
by ADA organization and Dentistry Today and NDA.
* J.A.D.A. News, Vol
132, July 2001 pg 864.
** Journal of the Tennessee Dental Association, Fall 2002,
Dentistry Today pg 46, February 2003.
Reducing Your Risk For Oral Cancer
Stop or limit use of tobacco products, including cigarettes, pipes,
cigars, and chewing tobacco
Consume alcoholic beverages in moderation
Protect your lips from excessive exposure to sunlight by using a
sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 12
Ensure that dentures fit properly and are not irritating the gums
Slide show on how to
check yourself for oral cancer:
Oral Cancer Can Strike Anyone
About 30,000 Americans each year contract oral
cancer, and 8,000 of them will die, but people remain ignorant of a
disease that can be cured if caught in the early stages.
This is not a disease that strikes just old men anymore. Oral
cancer can strike anyone, even people who don't smoke or drink, which
are two of the risk factors.
Oral cancer once struck mainly men in their 60s, but the largest
increase in cases now is seen in people under 40 years of age, and in
women. The survival rate remains unchanged from 50 years ago --
50 percent for someone diagnosed with the disease in its later stages.
Women began developing oral cancer when smoking became chic. As a
result, women have taken their place alongside their male counterparts
in developing the diseases that are prevalent to tobacco
use. Also women are drinking more openly now.
As for cases in people younger than 60, the causes remain a
mystery,but some cases may be due to a sexual transmission of a virus.
It can really strike at any age.
Five years ago, the lab developed a brush
biopsy that enables dentists to scrape cells from a person's mouth,
allowing them to catch oral cancer in its early stages. The procedure
takes about one minute to
complete and requires no local anesthetic or sutures.
In its early stages, oral cancer is hard to detect. A person doesn't
feel any pain and red and white bumps in a mouth that can be a precursor
to oral cancer are commonplace.... 5 to 10
percent of all Americans have spots in their mouths, and the
overwhelming majority are harmless.
There's no symptoms, no pain. They look like an ordinary-looking
sorethat you might get from a pizza burn or biting your lip.
Treating oral cancer is expensive, costing more than $100,000 per
person, surgery and chemotherapy are the big expenses. Nationally,
the cost of treating people who have oral cancer runs nearly $2 billion
People should go to their dentists at least once a year for a
Oral cancer now kills as many Americans as melanoma.
The Associated PressBy DONNA DE LA CRUZ
Associated Press Writer November 2004
see: Oral Cancer
for People with Oral and Head and Neck Cancer
Oral Health Education Foundation
of the Mouth and Throat
Health, Cancer Care, and You Campaign
Oral Cancer Chart 4/07 Smart Practice
February 06, 2008
Oral Cancer Index
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