Oral Cancer and Gum Disease Possibly Linked

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014, 7:25 pm

The links between oral health and systemic health have been proven for conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and problems with pregnancy. New research is showing a possible link between gum disease and oral cancer.

The study, published in Head & Face Medicine suggests that treatment and monitoring of chronic gum disease may help reduce a potential cause of oral squamous cell carcinoma.

“Our findings underline the necessity of implementing a periodontal regime in the dental office,” said study author Dr. Maximillian Moergel of the University Medical Centre Mainz in Germany.

The study looked at patients with oral squamous cell carcinoma and a control group that did not have the disease. Researchers found a correlation between chronic periodontitis and the oral cancers. They also found that treating the gum disease could perhaps reduce the incidence of of oral squamous cell carcinoma.

Oral cancers used to primarily be found in older men who were also smokers and/or alcohol users. The rate of oral cancers among younger patients has been increasing in the past several years.

When oral cancers are detected early, survival rates are high. Unfortunately, most oral cancers are detected when they have become more advanced. Oral cancer screenings are an important part of any dental examination.

Everyone should visit the dentist regularly for professional cleanings to protect against gum disease and to receive an oral examination. Preventing gum disease can protect against many diseases and early detection of oral cancers can save a life.

Contact Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-886-2581 to schedule your next visit.

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