The tissue inside our mouth is lined with a mucosa, that is smooth and a pinkish color. Any change to the appearance of this skin could be a warning sign of a disease; the most serious being oral cancer.
The following can be signs of disease or cancerous growth:
- Reddish patches (erythroplasia) or whitish patches (leukoplakia) in the mouth
- A sore that does not heal correctly and bleeds easily
- A lump or thickening of the skin lining the inside of the mouth, and
- Chronic sore throat or hoarseness and/or difficulty in chewing or swallowing.
Any changes to this skin can also be detected on the lips, cheeks, palate, and gum tissue around the teeth, tongue, face, and/or neck. If you feel any pain within the mouth or on the facial area close to the mouth, please contact our practice. You may not always feel pain and pain is not always associated with oral cancer. However, any patient with facial and/or oral pain without an obvious cause or reason may also be at risk for oral cancer.
If you notice any changes to the skin inside your mouth or notice any of these warning signs, please contact our practice with any questions or concerns. Our surgeons recommend that you perform a monthly oral cancer self-examination. Remember that your mouth is one of your body’s most important warning systems. Do not ignore any suspicious lumps or sores.