In Southeast Asia, South Asia, and certain other areas of the world, many people chew betel quid, which is made up of areca nut (betel nut), spices, lime, and other ingredients. The number of oropharyngeal cancers linked to HPV has risen dramatically over the past few decades. HPV is a group of more than 100 different types of related viruses. Studies have suggested the overall health of the mouth, teeth, and gums may impact oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancer risk because of changes in the normal bacteria in the mouth. Human papillomavirus (HPV) is a group of more than 150 types of viruses. We will reply by email or phone if you leave us your details. Cigarette smoking is a major cause of cancers of the oral cavity in the United States. This increases the risk of oral cancer, which can occur as early as 2 years after GVHD. Pipe smokers also have a higher risk of developing cancer in their lips. © 2021 American Cancer Society, Inc. All rights reserved. GVHD occurs when the donor stem cells recognize the patient’s cells as foreign and launch an attack against them. It's important for smokers who have been treated for oral cavity or oropharyngeal cancer to quit smoking, even if their cancer seems to be cured. Most cancers are the result of many risk factors. There is convincing evidence that the following factors increase your risk for oral cancer. According to some studies, the risk of these cancers in heavy drinkers and smokers may be as much as 100 times higher than the risk in people who don’t smoke or drink. Sunlight is the main source of UV light for most people. See HPV (human papillomavirus) to learn more about HPV and HPV prevention. Betel quid and tobacco are often chewed together, or betel quid may contain tobacco. Papillomas are not cancers, and are more commonly called warts. Tobacco is believed by many experts to be the most notable risk factor of oral cancer, and there seems to be a strong correlation between the use of tobacco in any form and cancer of the cheeks, gums, lips, head and neck. Oral cancer is rare in children and young adults. Cancer is undeniably a serious disease, with over one hundred variations. The more you drink, the greater your risk. What does it take to outsmart cancer? The risk of oral and oropharyngeal cancer is greatly increased by 2 factors: Tobacco use. 2017;9:124. Oral Cavity (Mouth) and Oropharyngeal (Throat) Cancer, inherited defects (mutations) in certain genes. American Cancer Society medical information is copyrighted material. HPV DNA (a sign of HPV infection) is found in about 2 out of 3 oropharyngeal cancers and in a much smaller fraction of oral cavity cancers. They can also infect the mouth and throat. Cancer Stat Facts: Oral Cavity and Pharynx Cancer. But recent research has questioned these results. While oral cancer can affect anyone, there are several risk factors that increase the likelihood of its development. Oral tobacco products (snuff, dip, spit, chew, or dissolvable tobacco) are linked with cancers of the cheek, gums, and inner surface of the lips. Alcohol is one of the main risk factors for oral cancer. They're called papillomaviruses because some of them cause a type of growth called a papilloma. Sometimes the sores can develop into ulcers. Continuing to smoke after treatment for oral cancer increases the risk of developing a second oral cancer. The American Cancer Society couldn’t do what we do without the support of our partners. Having lichen planus with ulcers in the mouth for a long time increases the risk of developing oral cancer. National Cancer Institute. The risk is especially high for people with heavy alcohol and tobacco use. A few studies found that having dentures that don’t fit properly can increase the risk for oral cancer. Asian ancestry, particularly Chinese ancestry, is a risk factor for nasopharyngeal cancer. If you […] Drinking alcohol increases your risk of mouth and oropharyngeal cancer. Dyskeratosis congenital is a genetic syndrome that can cause abnormal red blood cells, skin rashes and abnormal fingernails and toenails. A weakened immune system Chewing betel quid or areca nut is common in South Asia and among some South-Asian immigrants in Canada. Fanconi anemia is a rare genetic condition that affects the bone marrow so it can’t make enough red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets. Risk Factors for Oral Cancer By Dorothy Anderson | January 8, 2021 | Comments Off on Risk Factors for Oral Cancer. Oral sex and human papilloma virus-related head and neck squamous cell cancer: a review of the literature. The main risk factors of head and neck cancer worldwide are smoking and alcohol, as well as DNA oncogenic viruses and habits, such as betel nut. These products also cause gum disease, destruction of the bone sockets around teeth, and tooth loss. A person's risk for oral cancer increases the longer he or she smokes; although, on a more positive note, smoking cessation is linked to a significant decrease in risk. One of the most important precautions that you can take for oral cancer is opting for regular oral cancer screening with your dentist, at least twice in a year. People with certain syndromes caused by inherited defects (mutations) in certain genes have a very high risk of mouth and throat cancer. Genetic syndromes: Some inherited genetic mutations, which cause different syndromes in the body, carry a high risk of oral cancer. Accessed at https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/oralcav.html on February 22, 2018. Presented in partnership with Desjardins. It’s estimated that approximately 51,540 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer and cancers of the throat, tonsils and back of the tongue in 2018. They may not go to the dentist very often to take care of their mouth. Hence, it is important for the public and the clinicians to be completely aware of the risk factors for oral cancer and it is prudent for dentists to look carefully for early signs of oral cancer, while routine examination of the oral cavity especially in patients with history of known risk factors. Cancers of the oral cavity and oropharynx usually take many years to develop, so they're not common in young people. They can infect the sexual organs (the penis in men or the vulva, vagina and cervix in women), the rectum and the anus. From basic information about cancer and its causes to in-depth information on specific cancer types – including risk factors, early detection, diagnosis, and treatment options – you’ll find it here. 2015;8(3):126-133. Most people with oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancers use tobacco, and the risk of developing these cancers is related to how much and how long they smoked or chewed. Some studies have suggested that mouthwash with a high alcohol content might be linked to a higher risk of oral and oropharyngeal cancers. These develop at a much earlier age than oral cancer caused by other risk factors. Cancer is one of the biggest concerns for the elderly amongst family caregivers. People with the following inherited conditions have a higher risk of developing precancerous changes in the mouth and oral cancer. All denture wearers should remove their dentures at night and clean and rinse them thoroughly every day. Börnigen D, Ren B, Pickard R, et al. Graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) is a condition that sometimes occurs after a stem cell transplant. GVHD can affect many tissues of the body, including those in the mouth. Tobacco is the leading cause of cancer worldwide 4 and a well-established risk factor for oral SCC. However, some lifestyle factors that can reduce the risk of oral cancer … Alterations in oral bacterial communities are associated with risk factors for oral and oropharyngeal cancer. Studies show that people with poor oral health have a higher risk of developing oral cancer. Cancers of the lip are more common in people who have outdoor jobs where they are exposed to sunlight for long periods of time. Tobacco use of any kind, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco and snuff, among others 2. Oral cancer is rare in children and young adults. Betel quid and areca nut contain cancer-causing substances. Tobacco and alcohol use are 2 of the strongest risk factors for oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancers. Apart from these factors, there are other various etiological factors that cause oral cancer. Many people in these areas also chew gutka, a mixture of betel quid and tobacco. American Cancer Society. More men than women develop oral cancer, and it occurs more often in men of African descent. The more risk factors a person has, the greater his or her chance of developing oral cancer. Research. We couldn’t do what we do without our volunteers and donors. Almost 50% of oral cancer patients have been noted to reach the final stages of the disease in hospitals and health care centres (Shrivastava et al., 2013). The risk of developing oral cancer increases with age and is greatest after 45 years of age. Discover how 16 factors affect your cancer risk and how you can take action with our interactive tool – It’s My Life! Please call us for help quitting tobacco or see How to Quit Smoking or Smokeless Tobacco for more information. Imagine a world free from cancer. The type linked to throat cancer (including cancer of the oropharynx) is HPV16. Substances like carotenoids, which are common in vegetables and fruit, are linked with a lower risk of oral cancer. The hot beverage may cause damage to the cells in the mouth, which may develop into a cancer. This includes smoking cigarettes, cigars, and pipes, as well as chewing tobacco… People who have had oral cancer have a higher risk of developing another oral cancer, especially if they continue to use tobacco or alcohol. It could be a behaviour, substance or condition. Tobacco and alcohol use are 2 of the strongest risk factors for oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancers. Smoking cigarettes, cigars or pipes increases the risk for oral cancer. Tobacco smoke from cigarettes, cigars, or pipes can cause cancers anywhere in the mouth or throat. Not having any risk factors doesn't mean that you won't get it, either. These include: Age. It isn’t known whether or not the following factors are linked with oral cancer. 2017;73:111-117. People with weakened immune systems are also more likely to get an HPV infection, which increases the risk for oral cancer. Cancer risk factors include exposure to chemicals or other substances, as well as certain behaviors. A risk factor is anything that changes a person’s chance of getting a disease such as cancer. What patients and caregivers need to know about cancer, coronavirus, and COVID-19. A family history of certain cancers can be a sign of a possible inherited cancer syndrome. Using alcohol and tobacco together increases the risk of developing oral cancer more than using either one alone. CCS adapting to COVID-19 realities to support Canadians during and after the pandemic. Our doctors provide the answer. Top 5 Risk Factors for Oral Cancer You know your dentist is looking for cavities during regular check-ups, but you may not realize your dentist can check for cancer at the same time. Tobacco As many as 80 percent of patients with oral cancers use some type of tobacco product. Tobacco is, probably, the most common risk factor for OC. Risk Factors The use of tobacco and alcohol are the two most important risk factors for cancer of the mouth. Oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancers are more common in people who have a weak immune system. Accessed at www.cancer.gov/types/head-and-neck/patient/adult/lip-mouth-treatment-pdq on February 22, 2018. Some factors influence risk more than others. It's been suggested that long-term irritation of the lining of the mouth caused by poorly fitting dentures is a risk factor for oral cancer. There are many risk factors linked to developing oral cancer. All forms of tobacco increase the risk for this cancer, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, bidis and smokeless tobacco (including chewing tobacco and snuff). Smokers are many times more likely than non-smokers to develop these cancers. Your immune system can be weakened after an organ transplant or treatment for an immune system disease. Cancer Information, Answers, and Hope. Oral contraceptives that contain both estrogen and progesterone can slightly increase the risk for breast cancer, especially among women who have used oral contraceptives for 10 or more years. The different types of HPV are usually given a number to identify them. Although the mouth is an accessible area that we can observe with a mirror, doctors don’t usually diagnose most patients with this type of cancer until its late stages, which makes treatment and prognosis much more difficult. Poor oral hygiene, which can lead to tooth loss, may also be linked to these cancers. People with poor oral health may have several missing teeth, bleeding gums or chronic infections from bacteria and viruses like HPV. Study shows that it is possible to develop oral cancer even without smoking and drinking. There is a higher risk of developing SCC in the head and neck region (including the mouth) if a first-degree family member (parent, sibling or child) has been diagnosed with SCC of the head and neck. Accessed at www.cancer.gov/types/head-and-neck/patient/adult/oropharyngeal-treatment-pdq on February 22, 2018. Subsequently, most dentists encourage patients who smoke to try and defeat the ugly habit. The following factors have been linked with oral cancer, but there is not enough evidence to show they are known risk factors. December 1, 2016. Thus, it’s important to avoid risk factors to prevent oral cancer altogether. Oral cancer is a severe disease, which can cause serious complications like death. Risk factors for developing oral cancer One of the biggest risk factors for oral cancer is tobacco use. Become a volunteer, make a tax-deductible donation, or participate in a fundraising event to help us save lives. Or write us. Various studies have clearly linked cigarette smoking to cancers of the oral cavity. It is interesting to note that even smokeless tobacco can lead to cancer of the cheeks, gums, and lips. Using smokeless tobacco products is linked with cancer of the gums and inner lining of the cheeks and lips because the tobacco regularly touches these areas. The higher risk may be due to taking drugs that suppress your immune system. Clin Epigenetics. Chewing betel, paan and areca is a major risk factor in developing oral cancer. Some risk factors for oral cancer, such as being male or aging, are not preventable. Pipe smoking is linked to a very high risk for cancer in the part of the lips that touch the pipe stem. Tobacco and alcohol are the most important risk factors for oral cancer. Li S, Ni XB, Xu C, et al. Others may be related to personal choices such as smoking, drinking, or diet. Betel Quid with Tobacco (Gutka). More research is needed, but regular dental visits, as well as brushing and flossing, may lessen these risks and have many other health benefits, too. Find out more about precancerous conditions of the mouth. Tobacco and alcohol are the most important risk factors for oral cancer. Cancer Facts & Figures 2018. The risk of developing oral cancer increases with age and is greatest after 45 years of age. We’ve invested more than $4.9 billion in cancer research since 1946, all to find more – and better – treatments, uncover factors that may cause cancer, and improve cancer patients’ quality of life. Alcohol According to the American Cancer Society, 7 of 10 oral cancer patients are heavy drinkers. Smoking is the single most important risk factor for oral cancer. Research shows around 30 out of 100 (30%) of mouth and oropharyngeal cancers are caused by drinking alcohol. Poor oral health affects survival in head and neck cancer. Infection with HPV-16 increases the risk of oral cancer. The higher risk disappears after the woman stops taking oral contraceptives. There are different kinds of risk factors. Find out more about graft-versus-host-disease (GVHD). More research is needed to clarify the role of these factors for oral cancer. common in men than in women. Oral cancer is most prevalent among those over 55. Some people chew areca nut by itself. Poorly fitting dentures can tend to trap agents that have been proven to cause oral cancer, such as alcohol and tobacco particles, so denture wearers should have them checked by a dentist regularly to ensure a good fit. April 2017. Fair-skinned people also have a greater risk of developing lip cancer. At the American Cancer Society, we’re on a mission to free the world from cancer. Lichen planus is a chronic condition that forms a rash or sores on the skin and inside the mouth, usually on the tongue, gums and lining of the cheeks. The habit is a very common one, especially on the Indian Sub-continent and Southeast Asia where it is responsible for 40% of oral cancers. Smoking and drinking together further increases the risk of cancer more than either by itself. The truth is that tens of thousands of Americans get oral cancer every year. People with a weakened immune system have a higher risk of developing oral cancer, especially lip cancer. For example, exposing skin to strong sunlight is a risk factor for skin cancer. Alcohol . Our team is made up of doctors and oncology certified nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing. Fanconi anemia is a blood condition caused by inherited abnormalities in several genes. Infection with certain types of HPV can cause some forms of cancer, including cancers of the penis, cervix, vulva, vagina, anus, mouth, and throat. HPV types are given numbers. At this time the US Food and Drug Administration has not approved a test for HPV infection of the mouth and throat. Excessive sun exposure to your lips 4. January 29, 2018. Approximately 70% of patients with oral cancer are heavy drinkers. Several studies have found that a diet low in fruits and vegetables is linked with an increased risk of cancers of the oral cavity and oropharynx. It’s also important to follow recommended screening guidelines, which can help detect certain cancers early. People who chew betel quid or areca nut have a higher risk of developing oral cancer, especially in the inner lining of the cheeks and lips. Having a risk factor, or even many, does not mean that a person will get the disease. Do you know the risk factors for oral cancer? For reprint requests, please see our Content Usage Policy. Most lip cancers occur on the bottom lip, likely because it’s more exposed to the sun. Another risk factor is excessive exposure to the sun, especially from a young age. Can Oral Cavity and Oropharyngeal Cancers Be Prevented? Smoking or using tobacco products increases the risk of oral cancer, especially if combined with high alcohol consumption. Oral and oropharyngeal cancers are twice as 2017;93(1105):704-709. If you drink, you are at risk for oral cancer. Using tobacco , including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco, and snuff, is the single largest risk factor for head and neck cancer. But many studies have found no increased risk in denture wearers overall. Gupta PC, Murti PR, Bhonsle RB, Mehta FS, Pindborg JJ. SCC is the most common type of oral cancer. It may be that researchers can’t show a definite link or that studies have had different results. Drinking alcohol increases the risk of developing oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancers. Even if someone does have risk factors, it's impossible to know for sure how much they contributed to causing the cancer. This disease occurs mainly in middle-aged people. During this medical procedure, blood stem cells from a donor are used to replace bone marrow that has been destroyed by disease, chemotherapy, or radiation. A risk factor for developing oral cancer is the use of smoking tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, and/or pipes. This may because the dentures rub on the gums and cause sores that may develop into a cancerous tumour. It is often combined with tobacco and chewed for very long periods and this habit can start in childhood. And research has shown that these cancers are becoming more common in younger people Previous studies have shown that performing oral sex is a strong risk factor for HPV-related oropharyngeal cancer. 2. Most patients with these cancers are older than 55 when the cancers are first found. in particular an increase in oral sex. You can help reduce your risk of cancer by making healthy choices like eating right, staying active and not smoking. Tax ID Number: 13-1788491. The risk of these cancers is even higher in people who both smoke and drink alcohol, with the highest risk in heavy smokers and drinkers. Available Every Minute of Every Day. The worst part about oral cancer, just like most other forms of cancer, is the fact that you don’t get to spot the symptoms until it’s too late. January 12, 2018. with no history of alcohol abuse or tobacco use than they were in the past. (National Cancer Institute) Symptoms. Until we do, we’ll be funding and conducting research, sharing expert information, supporting patients, and spreading the word about prevention. Our team of expert journalists brings you all angles of the cancer story – from breaking news and survivor stories to in-depth insights into cutting-edge research. The risk for oral cancer greatly increases when smoking is combined with using smokeless tobacco, drinking alcohol or both. A risk factor is something that increases the risk of developing cancer. This might be because men have been more likely to use tobacco and alcohol in the past. Cancer is known to be potentially passed on from generation to generation. Whether you want to learn about treatment options, get advice on coping with side effects, or have questions about health insurance, we’re here to help. > References : 1. © 2021 Canadian Cancer Society All rights reserved. Sun exposure increases the risk of developing lip cancer. Epstein-Barr virus is a risk factor for nasopharyngeal cancer and cancer of the salivary glands. These include: 1. Some studies show that second-hand smoke may also increase the risk for oral cancer. But in most cases, it is impossible to rank them with absolute certainty. A weak immune system can be caused by certain diseases present at birth, the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), and certain medicines (such as those given after organ transplants). People who chew betel quid or gutka have an increased risk of cancer of the mouth. Increasing the educational knowledge of the risk factors amongst the Southeast Asian population regarding the causes of oral cancer would prevent a reduction of the number of oral cancer cases. Farquhar DR, Divaris K, Mazul AL, et al. They also include things people cannot control, like age and family history. Studying this possible link is complicated by the fact that smokers and frequent drinkers (who already have an increased risk of these cancers) are more likely to use mouthwash than people who neither smoke nor drink. Hundred variations experience symptoms at an early age and may develop into a cancer paan areca. ) in certain genes the Leo and Gloria Rosen family in several genes to the. Possible to develop, so they 're called papillomaviruses because some of the mouth risk and how can... Long time is linked to developing oral cancer volunteer, make a tax-deductible donation, betel... 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