What is Oral Cancer

There are several types of cancer that plagues mankind; among this is oral cancer that is a subtype of the neck and head type. Oral cancer refers to a cancerous tissue formation that is located in the oral cavity; it arises from lesions that originate in any of the oral body tissues. The cells Meta sizes either from a distant site of origin or extends from a neighboring structure such as the nasal and mouth tissues. Oral cancers vary, however about 90 percent are squamous carcinoma and they begin from the mouth and lips and are likely to include the tongue. Oral cancer is likely to affect the floor of the mouth, roof of the mouth, cheek lining, lips and gums. One major characteristic of all the oral cancers is that they all appear similar when examined under the microscope and they tend to be malignant.

Oral cancer may present in several ways but one sure sign is painless lump, lesion or ulcer that does not go away in about two weeks. These may present on the tongue or any other mouth areas, they are often tiny and initially appear as a pale white or red patch on the soft mouth tissues. At an advanced stage they may be become sensitive to touch or develop a burning sensation. Other signs that may point to this problem are difficulty when swallowing, tongue problems, sores along the mouth and pain which is a later development.

There is no well established cause for oral cancer as the exact reason why the cells mutate is still unknown. Oral cancer follows the same rote which is surgery, radio or chemotherapy which are the common approaches for most types of cancer. India is one of the countries with a high prevalence of oral cancers; this is associated with chewing betel which is a common practice in that country. Oral sores that do not heal within 14 days should be a major concern to any person. Men are known to have a higher prevalence of cancer than women especially with age. Certain subtypes of oral cancer are known to be more common in certain continents than in other areas. In India oral fibrosis is quite common and people suffering from the cancer usually experience a burning sensation when they eat spicy foods.

Oral cancer is closely associated with tobacco use due to irritation of the mucous membrane that is found in the mouth emanating from cigarette heat and smoke. Tobacco is known to contain about sixty carcinogens; combustion only helps to increase their toxins. Chewing tobacco or snuff irritates the mucous membranes of the mouth which is likely to cause cancer. A combination of cigar smoke and alcohol poses an even greater threat to a person than any of the two when used separately. Mouth washes that contain alcohol have also been known to be contributing factors especially in Germany and Brazil. However there is controversy about whether these rinses actually cause cancer or not as there are different points of view about the rinses that contain alcohol.