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Editorial

Dr Manesh Lahori

Authors : Dr. Manesh Lahori
 

GUM DISEASE MAY LEAD TO ORAL CANCER

Taking care of your teeth and gums may not only save your smile, it could save your life. Study suggests a common form of gum disease may significantly raise the risk of head and neck cancer.

Researchers found that people diagnosed with head and neck cancers were much more likely to have chronic periodontitis than people without cancer. Periodontitis is advanced gum disease that leads to progressive loss of bone and soft tissue that surround the teeth.In fact, each millimeter of bone loss due to chronic periodontitis was associated with a more than four times higher risk of head and neckcancer, after taking into account other known risk factors such assmoking.

Evaluation of several studies has shown an increased risk of oral cancer with periodontal disease or tooth loss. In fact, Tezal et al. found an increased incidence of oral tumors or precancerous oral lesions in patients with greater than 1.5 mm clinical attachment loss. He found a significant increased risk of oral tumorand precancerous lesion with >1.5 mm CAL both still significant in never smokers. In other studies, tooth loss was identified as an independent risk factor for oral cancer because of the chronic trauma and irritation of the oral mucosa, which may play a role in carcinogenesis. Oral cancer risk was even higher in persons who smoked cigarettes, drank alcohol, and had lost teeth without replacement when compared to individuals who did not smoke or drink and had not lost any teeth.

Prevention or treatment of sources of inflammation in the oral cavity may be a simple yet effective way to reduce the acquisition and persistence of oral infection. Gum disease is treatable and even reversible. Diligent attention to the formation of unhealthy (smelly, sticky) dental plaque, a sign of an unbalanced oral biofilm, should be regarded as the beginning of a process that can save your life and add years to your lifespan.

Editor

Dr. Manish Lahori
Dr. Manesh Lahori
B.D.S, M.D.S, F.I.S.O.I, F.I.C.O.I
Professor & H.O.D
Dept. of Prosthodontics
K.D Dental College, Mathura, India