An oral cancer can appear anywhere in or around the mouth, but it is most commonly found on the lower lip. Statistics show that oral cancer is more apt to affect women than men and people who are over 40 years of age. Tobacco use and alcohol consumption increase the risk.
Be aware of a blister or sore that is lasting longer than it should or any unusual redness or white patches inside your mouth. Numbness or difficulty swallowing can also be warning signs. You may feel the need to clear your throat, like something is stuck there.
Unexplained hoarseness can also be a cause for concern.
Discuss any family history with your dentist. He will examine your entire mouth and may take a tissue sample.
Treatment will be determined by an oral cancer specialist who will do more extensive testing. Treatments can range from therapy to surgery.