Signs and Symptoms of Oral Cancer

Early Signs of Oral Cancer are often mistaken for other diseases such as toothache and the common cold. It is advised to see your healthcare provider if symptoms continue for several weeks or months because the diagnosis of any disease at an earlier stage is necessary and helpful for effective treatment. 

How Does Oral Cancer Look Like?

Oral Cancer may not cause any symptom in its initial stage. Most often, a small and shallow sore (painful, at times) is found at the base of the mouth or anywhere inside the mouth. It may be colorless, red, or white. Sometimes a sore is observed on or near the lips (indicating Cancer in the Lips).

Most Common Signs of Oral Cancer

  • Mouth sores- One or more painful sores on the lining of the lips, gums, tongue, roof, or floor of the mouth that last longer than usual.

  • Mouth pain- Pain in any of the corners of the mouth that cause jaw discomfort.

  • A lump in the cheek- Thickening in the cheek, causing pain.

  • Difficulty swallowing or chewing- Jaw pain while chewing or mouth pain while swallowing the food items.

  • Voice changes- Notable change in voice due to sore throat.

  • Pain in the teeth or jaw- Constant or periodical pain in the teeth or/and jaw due to loosening of the teeth and jaw swelling.

  • Weight loss- Sudden weight loss, usually due to loss of appetite.

  • Persistent bad breath- Bad breath and a consistent bad taste in the mouth.

  • Bleeding in the mouth- Unusual bleeding or bruising in the mouth, that doesn’t stop easily. 

Most Common Symptoms of Oral Cancer

Symptoms of Cancer may affect your daily routine. Some of the early symptoms of Oral Cancer are nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, anxiety, digestive issues, weakness, ear pain, white or reddish patch in the mouth, numbness in the mouth, etc.

How Can I Detect Oral Cancer at Home?

In case you experience any of the symptoms of Oral Cancer (as mentioned above), it is advisable to try self-screening for Oral Cancer. It is done by pulling your cheeks outwards while standing in front of a mirror. By putting your tongue out, observe the inside of the mouth closely and thoroughly. Look at it and try to feel the inner portion with the help of gloved hands. If you feel any abnormality or sore (paining) in that area, contact your healthcare provider immediately and fix an appointment for Oral Cancer Screening. 

It is advised to contact a medical practitioner if you experience these or any other signs and symptoms for more than the usual period because detection of oral cancer at an early stage makes the way for its easy treatment.


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