Tag Archives: oral cancer

Oral Disease: Top 3 Oral Diseases that could Impact Your Health

Headline: The top three oral diseases that could impact your health

When it comes to your mouth, it’s important to know what you’re up against in order to stay on top of your oral health and prevent future issues. According to the CDC, oral health includes the “teeth, gums, and the entire oral-facial system that allows us to smile, speak, and chew.” There are three common oral diseases that can greatly affect your oral health:

  • Dental caries (cavities)
  • Periodontitis
  • Oral cancer

By knowing the causes and prevention methods for each of these three diseases, you are one step closer to avoiding these oral problems and increasing not only your oral health, but your overall wellbeing.

Related article: https://www.cdc.gov/oralhealth/conditions/index.html

Oral Disease: Dental Caries

Dental caries, also known as cavities or tooth decay, are the most common dental problem in both children and adults. Caries affect up to two thirds of adolescents, and 60-90% of school age children, according to statistics.

Specifically, dental caries are caused by numerous factors such as:

  • Consuming an excess of sugar
  • Not thoroughly cleaning the teeth
  • Having a high number of bacteria/plaque in the mouth

These factors can all lead to tooth decay or holes in the surface of your teeth. Thankfully, dental caries are also easily preventable. By brushing twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, using a fluoride-based mouthwash, frequently flossing, and implementing a reduction in sugar intake will make a huge difference in your oral health and will greatly reduce your risk of oral disease.

Oral Disease: Periodontitis

Periodontitis is a gum disease caused by the inflammation of the gums and deterioration of the soft tissue surrounding the bones that support your teeth. Similar to dental caries, poor oral hygiene and a high concentration of plaque leads to a higher risk of periodontitis. However, there are other factors that also increase one’s risk, such as diabetes, a weakened immune system, smoking tobacco, and obesity.

Regular dental checkups are a must in order to catch this oral disease early for treatment. If left untreated, periodontitis can make the gums inflamed and infected, leading to tooth extractions. So, make sure to keep up with your regular hygiene routine of brushing, flossing, and getting professional teeth cleanings to stay clear of this disease.

Oral Disease: Oral Cancer

Oral cancer is any type of cancer that forms in the mouth. It’s important to be diligent with your symptoms, and immediately let your doctor know if you are experiencing indicators such as: a sore that doesn’t heal, painful swallowing, a white or red patch in your mouth, or mouth pain. Like other types of cancers, oral cancer occurs when cells around the mouth mutate and form abnormal cells. It’s also important to catch this oral disease early on to increase the chances of ridding the cancer and improving your health.

Unlike dental caries and periodontitis, where frequent brushing and flossing will greatly decrease risk, there is no known prevention for oral cancer. However, according to Mayo Clinic, there are some steps to take to reduce your risk of developing this cancer, such as reducing alcohol and tobacco consumption.

To learn more about risks and prevention, please visit: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/mouth-cancer/symptoms-causes/syc-20350997

Knowing how to prevent these three common oral diseases can make such a huge impact on the future of your teeth. Knowledge is power! Don’t forget to check back over our tips and prevention techniques to reach the best level of oral health.

GPS Dental Can Help

Dental professionals are true advocates of oral care. We are not only adamant about keeping teeth clean, but we­ are also concerned with your overall dental health. Checking for defects, abnormalities, and indications of severe issues in the bone, teeth, or gums are also at the forefront of our practice. Similarly, offering advice on how to properly care for teeth and correct certain habits is also a part of the patient education that we offer. Should you be looking for a dentist that is serious about oral care, contact our dental office to book your dental appointment.

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek is a dental implant dentist and his experienced, friendly team at GPS Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at (210) 633-3477 to make an appointment.

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month: A Good Time to Visit Your Dentist for an Oral Cancer Screening

oral-cancer-screening

Oral health professionals and those affected by oral cancer work diligently to advocate for education and prevention; especially during April, as it is Oral Cancer Awareness Month. Although this month is especially important in educating individuals on what oral cancer looks like and the available preventative steps that can lower risk, to include scheduling your oral cancer screening; it’s vital that people monitor their oral health year-round.

Oral cancer can affect anyone, making it critical that you know what warning signs and symptoms point to the early stages of various types of oral cancer.

Oral Cancer: The Statistics

Did you know that over 9,000 women and 21,000 men in the United States receive an oral cancer diagnoses each year; that statistic is according to the National Cancer Institute.

According to the American Cancer Society’s most recent estimates for oral cancer diagnoses in 2019, just in the United States are:

  • Approximately 53,000 people will get oral cancer
  • An estimated 10,860 people will die from this disease

Oral cancer typically strikes in the mouth and throat beginning in the flat cells, or squamous cells, that cover the surfaces of the mouth, tongue and lips.

What Adds to the Risk Factors for Oral Cancer?

  • Tobacco Use
  • Heavy Alcohol Consumption
  • Infection with the human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Sun Exposure
  • Betel Nut Use
  • Personal History of Oral Cancer
Here’s a side-note … 
during my research for this blog, I had to ask,
“What is a Betel Nut?”
The information I discovered is disturbing:

Betel nuts are found across Asia, growing in palm trees. They’re used so widely, they’re one of the most popular mind-altering substances in the world. People chew on the nut and the leaf together to get high. Supposedly, it’s like a combination of tobacco and a lot of caffeine.

When they are chewed, the nuts give user a rush of stamina and euphoria. Excessive chewing causes discolored or even loss of teeth and oral cancer. Unfortunately, they’re not very difficult to purchase in the U.S. because they are not illegal or banned at this time.

Even though the betel nut is not a controlled substance, it can be illegal to import, especially wholesale. They can be dangerous, and the World Health Organization has labeled the betel nut as a carcinogen.

Symptoms of Oral Cancer?

Symptoms to watch for include:

  • Patches inside the mouth or on the lips
  • Sore on the mouth or lips that just doesn’t heal
  • Bleeding in the mouth
  • Loose teeth
  • Pain or difficulty swallowing
  • Lump in the neck
  • Numbness of lower lip and chin
  • Difficulty wearing dentures
  • Persistent earache

Visit your dentist or physician immediately for an oral cancer screening if you have any of these symptoms.

The death rate associated with oral and oropharyngeal cancers remains particularly high because the cancers routinely are discovered late in their development. Fortunately, when oral and oropharyngeal cancers are detected (most commonly through an oral cancer screening) and treated early, mortality and treatment-related health problems are reduced.

What Can Be Done to Prevent Oral Cancer?

Your best bet in catching oral cancer during its early stages is with a regular oral cancer screening performed by a trusted oral health professional, like Dr. Gary Skrobanek and his expert team at GPS Dental in San Antonio. They have the knowledge and experience to identify potential symptoms of various types of oral cancer and can connect you with the medical services you need.

Related Article: Oral Cancer Screening – You Need to Know!

In addition to an oral cancer screening during each of your dental appointments from Dr. Skrobanek, you can complete self-directed oral inspections. Inspect your mouth monthly for the warning signs listed above. For a more complete and thorough inspection, you can use a small light and mirror to see otherwise blocked areas. Upon finding anything suspicious, immediately contact your oral health professional.

Related Article: Why We Perform Oral Cancer Screenings during Dental Checkups

Dentists and doctors alike will also recommend that people cut out tobacco use completely, as it is known to impact your overall health negatively. At GPS Dental, we’re dedicated to helping our patients maintain a healthy mouth and a healthy life. To schedule your oral cancer screening, contact us today.

Additional Resources:

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek is a dental implant dentist and his experienced, friendly team at GPS Dental offer affordable family dentistry and gentle dental care in the San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at (210) 633-3477 to make an appointment.

Oral Diseases and Tooth Loss… GPS Dental Can Help

oral-disease

Not many individuals understand the importance of maintaining a healthy mouth. Daily brushing and flossing, as well as heading to the dentist regularly are essential habits to adopt. Ignoring these practices can lead to various oral diseases, commonly known as periodontal disease.  It is imperative that people implement positive habits to prevent these issues from happening.

According to statistics, more than half of Texans aged 45 to 64 experienced tooth loss due to oral disease. It has also been proven  that one out of every 7 adults in the U.S. aged 65 and older are missing all of their natural teeth. These issues highlight the importance of oral health, and individuals should commit to healthy oral habits to avoid tooth loss and other adverse effects.

What are Oral Diseases?

Dentists are always stressing to patients the importance of up keeping their oral health. Patients are often advised to brush their teeth every day and implement daily flossing. That is because the frequent consumption of food causes plaque to build up on teeth. Cleaning teeth thoroughly removes plaque, which left unchecked can produce acids that attack the teeth and gums.

Neglecting dental cleaning can cause deterioration, the development of gingivitis, and eventually, gum disease if not treated appropriately. Ultimately, the gums begin to recede, giving bacteria access to tooth roots and the ability to destroy exposed bone structures.

How Does Oral Disease Contribute to Tooth Loss?

As mentioned, gums begin to pull away from teeth, creating pockets that food and plaque can easily be trapped in. These pockets with wedged pieces of food can lead to infection. As the disease progresses, the bacteria eat away at the bone, causing a weak structure that results in the loss of teeth.

Related Articles:

Other Types of Dental and Oral Diseases

In addition to gingivitis, gum disease, and oral infections, other dental diseases can surface. These include cavities and oral cancer. Cavities generally occur when sugar and bacteria in the mouth create an acid that eats away at tooth enamel.

In adults, cavities occur due to bacteria getting caught around the perimeter of a filling. Root cavities also happen due to gum recession and the exposure of roots, which are susceptible to cavities and damage.

Oral cancer is also a common issue among adults. Heavy tobacco and alcohol use are some of the leading causes of this detrimental disease. Signs of oral cancer include difficulty swallowing, a white or red patch in the mouth, pain when moving the tongue or jaw, and more.

Related Article: Get Your Oral Cancer Screening

GPS Dental Can Help to Improve Your Oral Health

At GPS Dental, we encourage patients to adopt healthy oral habits. Our job as professionals is to guide the oral health of our patients. Therefore, professional checkups and cleanings, in addition to everyday habits, are essential to avoid oral diseases. Should you be looking for a team of dental professionals that are dedicated to your oral health, contact our office in San Antonio to book an appointment.

Related Article: Brooks City Base Dentist: GPS Spotlight on Gary Skrobanek, DDS

Dr. Gary P. Skrobanek’s experienced and friendly team at GPS Dental offers family dentistry for all ages in San Antonio, TX area. Our Brooks City Base dentist office is conveniently located and offers early morning appointment times Monday through Friday to meet your needs. At GPS Dental, we promote dental health awareness to our patients and provide most dental services, from family and general dentistry to dental implantssleep apneaTMJ / TMD Treatmentcosmetic dentistry and much more. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Call us at 210-633-3477 to make an appointment.