Mouth Ulcers and Oral Cancer
What are mouth ulcers?
Mouth ulcers are painful round or oval sores that form in the mouth, most often on the inside of the cheeks or lips. They’re usually white, red, yellow or grey in colour and are inflamed (red and swollen) around the edge.
How can ulcers be caused?
Usually a single mouth ulcer is due to damage caused by biting the cheek or tongue, or by sharp teeth, brushing or poorly fitting dentures. These ulcers are called ‘traumatic’ ulcers.
How long do ulcers take to heal up?
Mouth ulcers can take up to 2-3 weeks to heal depending on the size of the ulcer. The bigger the ulcer the longer it may take to heal as the damage is more severe.
I have an ulcer that’s taking a long time to heal – should I be concerned?
Any ulcers lasting longer than 3 weeks and not healing on their own should be checked by a dentist. Any persistent lumps should also be seen by your dentist. They can happen on the lips, tongue, gums, cheek or even on your palate. Persistent white, red or mixed red-and-white patches in these areas need looking at, too.
Who is affected by oral cancer?
Anyone can be affected by mouth cancer, whether they have their own teeth or not. Mouth cancers are more common in people over 40, particularly men.
What can cause oral cancer?
Oral cancer is largely liked to smoking tobacco (this is cigarette, cigar and pipe smoking) and alcohol. If smoking and drinking are combined the risk of developing oral cancer is increased.
Over exposure to sunlight can increase the risk of cancer of the lips.
What are the symptoms for Oral Cancer?
Mouth cancer can appear in different forms and can affect all parts of the mouth, including the tongue and lips. Mouth cancer can appear as a painless mouth ulcer that does not heal normally. A white or red patch in the mouth can also develop into a cancer. Be aware of any unusual lumps in your mouth or jaw area and any persistent change in hoarseness. It is important to visit your dental team or doctor if these areas do not heal within three weeks. If you’re not sure whether it’s anything serious, go for a Dental Health Check anyway.
For more information or to book your 12 point Dental Health check with Dental@155 Please Call to speak to Our Team 01332 209647