Time to watch your mouth
As part of Mouth Cancer Awareness Week (14th - 20th November) Action Cancer has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the disease.
Mouth cancer is one of the most accessible cancers for examination and monitoring, but is the UK’s fastest growing cancer.
Deirdre Convery from Convery Dental Care, Antrim Road said: “In Northern Ireland 150 cases are diagnosed annually with around 50 people dying from the disease every year here. The number of deaths from mouth cancer will only be reduced if the disease is recognised earlier and treated sooner. Early detection of mouth cancer increases survival rates from 50% to 90%, so it’s crucial the public are aware of the risk factors and can identify early symptoms of the disease — particularly the high risk groups including males and people who smoke and drink.”
Emily Magrath, Action Cancer Health Promotion Manager, said “Mouth cancer is twice as prevalent in men as in women, though an increasing number of women are being diagnosed with the disease. Research suggests this is due to increased uptake in smoking among young females.”
Initial symptoms include: one or more mouth ulcers that do not heal; red or white patches on the lining of your mouth or tongue; and any unusual lumps or swelling in the mouth.