November is Mouth Cancer Action Month and the campaign aims to address and tackle mouth cancer in the UK

The Oral Health Foundation (OHF) aim to get more mouth cancers diagnosed at an early stage by raising awareness of the disease while encouraging everybody to be more vigilant about changes in their mouth.

It is supported by the Mouth Cancer Foundation and the Oral Health Foundation.

The OHF is building up to this year’s Mouth Cancer Action Month by calling on everybody to be ‘mouthaware’.

More than 8,300 people in the United Kingdom are now diagnosed with mouth cancer every year and the figure has increased by 49% in the last decade.

Latest reports show that mouth cancer claimed 2,722 lives in the UK last year. and many of these are because the disease is caught too late.

Dr Nigel Carter OBE, chief executive of the Oral Health Foundation, believes everybody needs to be aware of any unusual changes in the mouth and know what to do if anything out of the ordinary is noticed.

How you can help beat mouth cancer

Dental health professionals are the natural leaders to lead the fight against mouth cancer and can help in many ways:

  • Warm patients of the dangers of tobacco use, alcohol abuse and the link to HPV.
  • Alert Asian patients to the dangers of paan and gutka chewing.
  • Carry out a thorough head and neck cancer screening on patients at annual routine check ups.
  • Make an effort to increase awareness of mouth cancers and the need for support for head and neck cancer patients.

The Mouth Cancer Foundation offers a variety of downloadable leaflets and materials.

For more information, including advice and information for how to get involved, how to spot risk factors and common signs and symptoms, as well as learning about the stories at the heart of the campaign, visit www.mouthcancer.org.