How to Prevent Mouth Cancer|tongue cancer treatment options
Protect Yourself Against Oral Cancer
While smoking and heavy drinking increase your risk, 35% of people who develop oral cancer get it as a result of the HPV-16 virus, says Brian Hill, founder and executive director of the Oral Cancer Foundation. Most are nonsmokers in their 30s and 40s. Aside from not smoking, you can protect yourself by:
Making sure your dentist screens you annually.She should visually inspect your face, neck, lips and mouth; use both hands to feel the area under your jaw and on both sides of your neck; feel inside the floor of your mouth and inside your lips and cheeks; and use a piece of gauze to gently pull your tongue forward. (Some dentists may also perform additional tests using special lights or dye, but it's unclear whether these extra steps are necessary or beneficial for most people.) f your dentist finds an abnormality, she may choose to do a brush biopsy (BrushTest) or scalpel biopsy, in which cells are collected and sent to a pathologist. Or she may refer you to an oral surgeon.
Asking your doctor about the HPV vaccine.It protects against several strains of the virus, including HPV-16, which can lead to oral and cervical cancer. It's currently recommended for girls and young women ages 9 to 26, but it may also help protect boys and young men.
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