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Posts for tag: Oral Cancer

By Silvestri & Deniger Dentistry
May 25, 2019
Category: Oral Health
Tags: nutrition   Oral Cancer  

There are a number of lifestyle changes you can make if you want to reduce your risk of oral cancer, with quitting a tobacco habit at the top of the list. You should also moderate your alcohol consumption and practice safe sex to prevent the spread of the human papilloma virus (HPV 16) linked to oral cancer.

And there's one other area that might be ripe for change—your diet. The foods we consume can work both ways in regard to cancer: some, especially processed products with certain chemicals, increase your cancer risk; more natural foods, on the other hand, can help your body fight cancer formation.

Although how cancer forms and grows isn't fully understood, we do know some of the mechanisms involved. One major factor in cancer growth is damage to DNA, the molecule that contains all the instructions for normal cell growth. Certain chemicals called carcinogens cause much of this DNA damage.

One example of these dangerous chemicals are nitrosamines, found in substances used to preserve meats like bacon or ham. Nitrosamines also occur in beer during the brewing process, some fish and fish products, processed cheese and foods pickled with nitrite salt. It's believed long-term consumption of foods with these chemicals can increase the risk of cancer.

On the other hand, there are foods with substances called antioxidants that help our bodies resist cancer. Antioxidants protect cells from unstable molecules called free radicals that can also damage DNA. You'll find antioxidants in abundance in fresh fruits and vegetables, especially those high in fiber. Vitamins like C and E found in many natural foods also have antioxidant properties.

So, to help keep your risk of cancer and other diseases low, make sure your diet includes mostly fresh fruits and vegetables, along with plant-based fats found in nuts or olive oil.  At the same time minimize your consumption of processed foods with preservatives and other chemicals, along with animal and saturated fats.

A change in eating not only reduces your cancer risk, it can also improve your overall health and well-being. You'll also find a healthy diet can be dental-friendly—it can help keep your teeth and gums disease-free and healthy.

If you would like more information on dental-friendly nutrition practices, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Diet and Prevention of Oral Cancer.”

By Silvestri & Deniger Dentistry
July 19, 2018
Category: Oral Health

Fans of the legendary rock band Steely Dan received some sad news a few months ago: Co-founder Walter Becker died unexpectedly at the age of 67. The cause of his death was an aggressive form of esophageal cancer. This disease, which is related to oral cancer, may not get as much attention as some others. Yet Becker's name is the latest addition to the list of well-known people whose lives it has cut short—including actor Humphrey Bogart, writer Christopher Hitchens, and TV personality Richard Dawson.

As its name implies, esophageal cancer affects the esophagus: the long, hollow tube that joins the throat to the stomach. Solid and liquid foods taken into the mouth pass through this tube on their way through the digestive system. Worldwide, it is the sixth most common cause of cancer deaths.

Like oral cancer, esophageal cancer generally does not produce obvious symptoms in its early stages. As a result, by the time these diseases are discovered, both types of cancer are most often in their later stages, and often prove difficult to treat successfully. Another similarity is that dentists can play an important role in oral and esophageal cancer detection.

Many people see dentists more often than any other health care professionals—at recommended twice-yearly checkups, for example. During routine examinations, we check the mouth, tongue, neck and throat for possible signs of oral cancer. These may include lumps, swellings, discolorations, and other abnormalities—which, fortunately, are most often harmless. Other symptoms, including persistent coughing or hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, and unexplained weight loss, are common to both oral and esophageal cancer. Chest pain, worsening heartburn or indigestion and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can also alert us to the possibility of esophageal cancer.

Cancer may be a scary subject—but early detection and treatment can offer many people the best possible outcome. If you have questions about oral or esophageal cancer, call our office or schedule a consultation. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine article “Oral Cancer.”

By Silvestri & Deniger Dentistry
December 06, 2017
Category: Oral Health
Tags: Oral Cancer  

Find out how only a couple minutes of your time could just end up saving your life.oral cancer

We know that visiting the dentist isn’t always high on your list of exciting things to do, and if you aren’t dealing with symptoms you may just assume that everything is fine. Unfortunately, there are issues that can arise that you may not immediately notice but a medical eye can catch. Our Slidell, LA dentists Dr. Susan Silvestri and Dr. Ronnie Deniger are here to tell you why you should come in every six months for routine dental exams.

Besides removing plaque and tartar from teeth and checking to make sure you don’t have cavities or gum disease, these trips that you take to visit our Slidell, LA, general dentists twice a year could also save your life. While you may not even realize it, when we are cleaning your teeth and gums we are also checking for signs of oral cancer.

Oral cancer screenings are completely painless and they only take a minute or two. We check all oral tissue and even your tongue to look for discolorations, sores, lumps or other signs of oral cancer. With life-threatening conditions like oral cancer, the sooner you can detect the issue the better. Luckily, by coming into our office for routine exams we are better able to pinpoint early signs of oral cancer so that you can get the proper treatment you need.

Are you at risk for oral cancer?

While anyone can develop oral cancer, there are certain factors that can increase your chances. Some risk factors include:

  • Your age (those over the age of 40 are at a higher risk)
  • Using tobacco products
  • Heavy alcohol consumption
  • Being diagnosed with HPV (the human papillomavirus)
  • Gender (men are more likely to develop oral cancer than women)
  • A poor diet

Of course, whether you have risk factors or not it’s important that you come in at least twice a year for routine screenings and preventive dental care. If you are at risk it’s also a good idea to talk to us about whether or not you could benefit from getting oral cancer screenings more regularly.

If you have questions about oral cancer screenings or if you need to schedule your next dental visit call the experts at Silvestri & Deniger Dentistry in Slidell, LA. Whatever your dental needs may be, we are here to serve you.

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