It’s Your Mouth—Are You Taking Care of It?
Your mouth is a huge part of your everyday life. Eating, talking, drinking, speaking, smiling, frowning—what would we do without it?
However, consistently we see that some people are either afraid of the dentist or just don’t remember to invest time in their dental health. As this is National Mouth Cancer Awareness Month, we wanted to share some valuable information about mouth cancer and the importance of scheduling regular dental exams and checkups.
Mouth Cancer Information:
- Cancer in the mouth can affect the tongue, lips, cheeks and throat.
- If diagnosed early, treatment is usually successful.
- Mouth cancer can be caused by tobacco found in cigarettes, cigars, and pipe smoking.
- Alcohol can increase the risk of mouth cancer.
- Over exposure to sunlight can be a cause of cancer of the lips.
- Mouth cancer can appear as a mouth ulcer that doesn’t heal. There may be an unusual lump, or a red or white patch. You may feel pain in the ear, mouth, or face or have pain when swallowing. Coughing or enlarged lymph nodes can also be a sign of mouth cancer.
Keep Your Mouth Healthy:
- Don’t use tobacco products
- Wear lip balm with sun protection
- Limit alcohol use
- Eat a balanced, healthy diet filled with fruits and vegetables
- Visit your dentist regularly
- Check your mouth regularly and take note of anything different or a sore that doesn’t heal properly
The Importance of Regular Dental Checkups:
We know—most of us don’t like going to the dentist. But just because we don’t like it, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do it! Dental exams are vital for a dentist to detect any signs of tooth decay, mouth cancer, and gum disease. The more regularly you are checked, the less likely an issue will get out of hand and evolve into a larger problem.
Important Reasons to Visit the Dentist:
- Checking for cavities—treating them quickly helps eliminate health complications like abscesses or infections.
- Save Money—seeing a dentist twice a year can actually save you money. If you see a dentist twice a year, you’re on your way to Preventive Dentistry. Keeping your teeth clean and free of plaque, checking for oral cancers and gum disease can keep you from having costly bills if problems are left untreated.
- Gum Disease—Keeping your teeth clean cuts down on the risk of gum disease, like gingivitis or periodontitis.
- Save your teeth—Seeing a dentist regularly is the first step to maintaining and saving the teeth you have.
- Overall Health—Dentists can detect other health issues such as diabetes, heart disease and other health conditions just by doing an exam. Act now to prevent future issues.
Preventing cavities is an important part of your dental health. Sometimes, what you think might just be a toothache, could be a cavity. If you do have a cavity, it’s important to get to a dentist sooner rather than later.
Symptoms of a cavity:
- Spontaneous pain or pain that begins without any reason
- Tooth sensitivity
- Mild to sharp pain when eating or reacting to hot or cold foods or drinks
- Visible holes or pits in teeth
- Brown, black, or white staining on teeth
- Pain when you bite down on something
Taking care of your teeth and mouth health is an important part of your health routine. Make appointments six months apart and get your teeth cleaned and inspected at each appointment. Brush your teeth twice daily for at least two minutes (visit this blog post: Two Minutes to Success!) each time and remember to floss every day.
We are here for your dental needs. A clean mouth is a healthy mouth and leads to better health. Take care of your mouth by scheduling your dental visit.
If you have pain or an issue in between appointments, don’t hesitate to reach out to schedule a visit. Our staff is here to answer questions, suggest solutions, and work with you!
Get your appointment at either one of our Health Clinics. Click HERE for all the information.
We want you to smile and share those pearly whites!