Tobacco is a risk factor with more than twenty diseases. It claims to affect more risk factor on health as compared to any other disease. The number of fatalities from the use of tobacco is more than 4 million annually worldwide. The death toll by tobacco even surpasses the number of deaths by illegal drugs and alcohol, even if the numbers are combined.
Tobacco is the leading cause of cancer, heart diseases and also premature deaths. Tobacco is known to cause lung, bladder, pancreatic, kidney, stomach cancer. But mostly it can cause oral cancer. Despite the widespread knowledge of the risk that tobacco poses, the consumption of tobacco containing products hasn’t seen any decline. People continue to have cigarettes and other tobacco products that are single-handedly responsible for cancer, drug addiction, and an alarming death rate. The consumption of tobacco has become a substantial economic burden and is responsible for the reduction of the quality of life worldwide.
- Tobacco and Oral Cancer
Studies have shown a direct link between tobacco products and oral cancer. In Asia, oral cancer is the leading cancer in men and women. The survival rate of patients with oral cancer is 50 percent and is mostly due to the late detection of the disease. Early detection and prevention can help put up a strong fight against the deadly disease.
Tobacco products, heavy use of alcohol has been declared as the leading cause of oral cancer. The male-female ratio has however dropped from 6 to 1 and 2 to 1 now. Oral cancer is not detected until late at the age of 40. Oral cancer is a lifestyle disease and preventive measures can alter the effect of the same. Proper education and counseling about the disease and the treatment can help the patients be more attentive about the do’s and don’ts and this can save many lives lost to cancer.
- The General Points Relating to Oral Cancer:
Oral cancer is very much common in men as compared to women. This difference is mainly because of the consumption of alcohol and tobacco
The average age for the diagnosis of oral cancer is 62.
People who work outdoors and are exposed to long hours of sunlight have greater risks of getting cancer of lips.
People who have a low intake of fruits and vegetables have increased the risk of the oropharynx and oral cancer.
- Genetic Causes Related to Cancer
Sometimes, inherited genetic mutations can carry a high risk of oral and oropharyngeal cancer. The most common mutations are, Fanconi anemia and dyskeratosis congenita.
- Fanconi Anemia- The cause behind the blood condition is genetic abnormalities. The problems in the blood condition can start at an early age and lead to leukemia and aplastic anemia.
- Dyskeratosis Congenita- It is also a genetically linked syndrome that carries great risk of mouth and throat cancer at an early age.
Oral cancer is said to be a lifestyle based disease. Excess consumption of alcohol and tobacco is the greatest cause for it, especially when consumed together. About 80% of peoples who are affected by cancer use tobacco or nicotine in form of cigarettes and chewing tobacco. The risk increases with the increase in the duration and the frequency of the product.
In recent years, consumption of some oral hygiene products and procedures have also been risked with oral cancer. They are still not the leading cause of it but so play some role in it.
- Mouthwash: Some mouthwash has high alcohol content and carries the risk of cancer. People who smoke and drink regularly and use such high alcohol content mouthwash have double chances of developing cancer.
- Long-term denture irritation: Dentures that are not 100 percent perfect or fit cause long-term irritation in the mouth and are most prone to cancer. Peoples are suggested to take care of this and are also advised to keep them clean and remove them during the night.
Early detection is the only way to save lives from being lost at the hands of cancer. Oral cancers are difficult to detect and do not start showing symptoms until very late. It is thus suggested to visit the nearest dental clinic and get it checked before it is late to take proper measures.
A Guest Post By Shashi