Oral Health and Cancer | Highlands Louisville KY Dentist

There are over 12 million new cases of cancer diagnosed each year. There are a large variety of different kinds of cancer, some of which are more preventable than others. It might seem obvious that brushing and flossing each day as well as avoiding tobacco can help protect you from oral cancer. However, there are types of oral cancer and other cancers that can be prevented through optimal oral care as well. 

Dental Care and Oral Cancer 

While it’s long been known that tobacco and heavy alcohol use are the main causes of oral, head, and neck cancer, poor oral health has recently been added to the list. A 2007 study published in American Journal of Epidemiology found that poor mouth health and missing teeth were strongly linked to the development of oral cancer. Likewise, patients with healthy smiles were found to be far less likely to develop oral cancer. If you have been diagnosed with oral cancer, know that common oral health problems such as gum disease and tooth decay could be making the condition worse. Visiting our dental office regularly for professional cleanings, examinations, and oral cancer screenings to help catch signs of oral cancer early and make treatment easier and more effective. 

Oral Health and Other Cancers 

Poor oral health has been shown to be tied to other types of cancers outside of the mouth. For example, a recent study conducted by NYU Langone Health’s Perlmutter Cancer Center found that certain types of bacteria in patients with gum disease was tied to a higher risk of developing esophageal cancer. While esophageal cancer only accounts for 1% of new cancer cases diagnosed annually, over 90% of patients will die of the disease. Untreated gum disease opens up the tissues around the teeth to bacterial infection, allowing these harmful bacteria to enter the bloodstream and infect other parts of the patient’s body. Maintaining optimal oral health can help protect you from this threat. 

Your oral health affects much more than just your mouth. If you’re not taking care of your teeth, tongue, and gums, you could significantly increase your risk of developing cancer without even realizing it. If you’d like to learn more about the connection between oral health and cancer, contact Neighborhood Dental to schedule an examination and cleaning today!

Neighborhood Dental
Phone: (502) 365-9858
2232 Bardstown Rd, Suite A
Louisville, KY 40205
Photo of a patient being helped at the front desk

“the most delightful dental experience I’ve ever had”

“I’ve had waaaaaay too many bad dental experiences — sadistic orthodontists, upsells for things I don’t need, etc. — but that all changed today when I had my first visit at Neighborhood Dental. This was the most delightful dental experience I’ve ever had. Gentle, no nonsense dentistry from genuinely nice people. If you’ve had a bad dental experience or don’t feel any love from your current dentist, give these folks a try. I think you’ll be back for good.”

Gary G.

WE LOOK FORWARD TO MEETING YOU!

Dentist Louisville

Have a question? Send us a message or give us a call at (502) 365-9858. Ready to schedule an appointment? We’re ready to see you!

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Location & Hours

2232 Bardstown Rd Suite A, Louisville, KY 40205

Monday 9 AM–6 PM
Tuesday 9 AM–6 PM
Wednesday Closed
Thursday 9 AM–6 PM
Friday Closed
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

We are open one Saturday a month by appointment