Periodontal disease has been linked to many severe health conditions including diabetes and heart disease. Researchers in Germany appear to have found a correlation between periodontal disease and a type of oral cancer.

Recently published in the journal Head and Face Medicine, the study found that the monitoring and treatment of chronic periodontitis might help reduce a potential cause of oral squamous cell carcinoma. “Our findings underline the necessity of implementing a periodontal regime in the dental office,” said study author, Dr. Maximillian Moergel.

Chronic gum disease, periodontitis, is one of the most prevalent infections worldwide and Dr. Moergel sees patients that have oral cancers but do not have the usual history of drinking and smoking. He stated, “Thus we were interested in a possible relationship of chronic periodontitis and the development of cancer.”

This study found a link between periodontal disease and oral squamous cell carcinoma. Importantly, the study also found that treating periodontal disease could perhaps reduce the incidence of the oral cancer.

An oral cancer screening is an important part of every oral examination. Patients at higher risk for oral cancer include: older men, people who smoke, people who drink alcohol and people who have an oral HPV infection. Patients with chronic gum disease should also seek regular screenings and should treat their gum disease  to reduce risk.

Please contact Rothfus Family Dental in Medford, OR today at 541-858-7994 to schedule your next visit.

A British study reported that almost 90% of dental patients would like to be checked for oral cancer during their visits. Despite that number less than 20% of those surveyed said that their dentist had talked to them about the risks and symptoms of oral cancer. Hopefully dentists in the US are doing better at talking to patients about the importance of oral cancer screening than our colleagues across the Atlantic.

Oral cancer screening is a part of every comprehensive oral examination conducted here at Rothfus Family Dental. The rates of oral cancer have been increasing and it is vital for everyone to be screened regularly.

Oral cancers used to be seen primarily in older individuals who smoked and drank alcohol regularly. Unfortunately today we are seeing an entirely different group of patients being diagnosed with mouth and throat cancers — young adults. The primary cause for cancers in this age group appears to be HPV infection.

If you have not scheduled your appointment yet please contact Rothfus Family Dental  in Medford, OR today at 541-858-7994. Your smile and your overall health are important, please don’t delay.