Many people are unaware that more than 50,000 people are diagnosed with some form of oral cancer every year. In fact, the sad truth is that one person will die every hour from this disease this year – and yet, no one seems to be talking about it.
Fortunately, oral cancer doesn’t have to be the end game. There are things you can do(and stop doing) to help improve your overall health and dental well-being.
Start with the Positive
The good news is that you can prevent oral cancer in most cases. By practicing good dental hygiene, there is no reason you need to be overly worried about oral cancer – the key is being informed and alert, so if an issue does arise you can stay on top of it!
- Brush Daily. It isn’t enough to brush just once – dentists recommend brushing two times per day for two minutes each time. And don’t forget the floss!
- Use the Best Tools. Don’t use just ‘any old’ toothbrush. Opt for soft bristles and fluoride toothpaste to ensure you are doing everything you can to protect your enamel.
- Get an Exam. Twice a year you should be visiting your dentist for a thorough cleaning, exam, and x-ray. The best cure is prevention. Don’t have a dentist? Come see us as a new patient and your first appointment is just $59!
It’s Time for a Healthy Lifestyle
Americans don’t have the most healthy of lifestyles. In fact, it is our lifestyles that are directly contributing to the oral cancer rates in our country. Do what you can by cutting out these things:
- Tobacco. Whether smoking or chewing – just stop! Tobacco is a leading cause of oral cancers. You’ve probably seen the commercials of the people with half a jaw or needing to speak through their throat. . . it isn’t a pretty picture and it can be prevented.
- Sugar. An epidemic among kids and adults alike is our addiction to sugar. Not only does sugar cause diabetes and heart disease, but sugar can also cause cavities, tooth decay, gum inflammation, gingivitis, and more. Take some baby steps and skip the afternoon soda and opt for water instead.
Committed to Your Health
It may not be New Year’s, but there is always time to commit to your health. Help us spread the news that oral cancer is not as rare as you may have thought. Everyone should be scheduling an appointment with their dentist and stay on top of their dental hygiene. Not only do these things lead to beautiful smiles – they just may save your life.