Mouth cancer most often begins as a small ulcer or lump on the tongue, cheek or gums. Statistically speaking, at least 75% of those diagnosed with Oral Cancer are tobacco users. Those who both smoke and drink, have a 15 times greater risk of developing oral cancer than others. Chronic irritation from a sharp tooth is also known to initiate these changes. 30% of total cancers in India are from the Head and Neck region as compared to 5% in the western world. Tobacco, betel nut and ‘paan’ chewing; in addition to smoking and alcohol abuse are the reasons for the increased number of oral cancers in the Indian subcontinent. Even today, oncologists treat most of the cancers that affect the jaw. These oncologists have no dental background! Oral cancer can be successfully cured, but the quality of life may be affected due to various factors. One such reason could be the inability to chew food due to the removal of the jaw.
Early detection of oral cancer can be frightening, but early detection is the key to a better diagnosis. Oral cancer can develop anywhere inside your mouth, especially in the jaw regions.
Cancer Affected Jaw Technology
With advent of Cone Beam Computerised Technology (CBCT) a 3D scan of your cancer affected jaw with surrounding structures can now be printed on a 3D printer and accurate mouth cancer surgery along with replacement of teeth in the new jaw is now possible within few hours at Royal Dental Clinics. Here’s one more educating and informative video by Dr. Chirag Chamria, Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon at Royal Dental Clinics about Cancer Affected Jaw Teeth.
Dr Chirag Chamria on Oral Cancer
Dr. Chirag Chamria rightfully mentions that Oral Cancers are very much curable in the first and second stages. At Royal Cosmognathic, surgeons use modern treatment planning which is accurate and precise. This helps to restore the law which is lost due to cancer removal. Based on this precise finding, surgical guides and surgical stents can be prepared. Surgeons of Royal Dental Clinics complete such surgeries with precise planning, accurate models and with advanced polymers. Dr. Chirag Chamria also explains about a case with recurring Oral Cancer and the workaround used in a case like that. The use of such advanced and precise technology not only has benefits for dental implants, but also aids complete restoration of the mouth, because we use PEEK Framework, which acts like a very good shock absorber.
Causes for Oral Cancer in Jaw | Dr Chirag Chamria
Tobacco is one of the most common cause of mouth cancer. This includes chewing or smoking anything that contains tobacco. Smoking causes the deadliest type of oral cancer known as squamous cell carcinoma. The lining of mouth is rich with bacteria which produce nicotine. Nicotine irritates the mouth and leads to formation of small cancer cells. However, Cigarette smoking contains harmful chemicals like arsenic, which are carcinogenic and can destroy good cells in the mouth.
“Our aim at Royal Cosmognathic is to not to Fight Cancer. Aim is to Reconstruct what lost.”Dr Chirag Chamria
✦ Early detection of oral cancer
✱ Feelings of soreness, pain and changes to one’s teeth
✦ Loss of smell or taste
✱ Some mouth movements are less smooth, more distorted or asymmetrical
✦ Difficulty chewing or dry mouth
✱ Digestive problems such as bloating or stomach pain
✦ Excessive thirst or frequent urination
Rehabilitation of Oral Cancer Jaw Teeth
Rehabilitation of facial defects is required in patients who have undergone tumor ablative surgery for head and neck cancers as well as in a few trauma patients. A multidisciplinary approach is required in the care of these patients. In most of the cases of head and neck surgery, preparation for rehabilitation is done prior to the surgery. Patients may develop severe facial defects as a consequence of trauma, cancer surgery or congenital disorders.Craniofacial prosthesis to restore tissue loss in the eye, ear, nose and at multiple sites developed over the years to improve the individual’s quality of life and disguise the aesthetic problems created post surgery. These craniofacial prostheses retained either with skin adhesives or mechanically with extra oral implants.The rehabilitation after oral cancer includes:
- Restoration of the dental and facial aesthetics in patient
- Retaining or restoring lip function and clarity of speech
- Restoring stable dentition and ability to swallow
Oral Cancer Jaw Teeth – Treatment
Oral Cancer treatment depends mainly on general health, where in the mouth the cancer began, the size of the tumor, and whether the cancer has spread. Treatment of mouth cancers is ideally a multidisciplinary approach. The treatment modalities are surgery and radiation, with chemotherapy added to decrease the possibility of metastasis Some patients have a combination of treatments. Oral Surgery is the main form of treatment for oral cancers. Numerous surgical approaches have been developed that permit preservation of organ function and facial appearance to a far greater degree than was possible in the past. Patients are usually worried about changes in the facial appearance following cancer surgery.
Quality of Life after Oral Cancer
The taste and feel of food after oral cancer surgery is unique. Understanding what to expect, learning about the different types of surgery and knowing what you are likely to experience. As a result, can help ensure you’re prepared for that first bite. You may be able to eat some foods from day one. However, if your surgery involves removing a large portion of the inside of your mouth or tongue, eating may be difficult for some time. If you’ve had radiation treatment, it can take even longer for your sense of taste to return. Understanding what to expect will help make those first few days post-surgery much more manageable.
How long are the after effects of surgery?
Different people experience different levels of difficulties after surgery. In some cases, your mouth may be numbed or you may not be able to taste food. Other times, you may experience difficulty swallowing. It can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months for the taste and feel of food to return completely to normal.
The most important thing is to start slowly and not expect too much too soon. It’s also important that you continue making healthy food choices during this time period. Make sure that you are getting enough protein and other nutritional foods in order to maintain your weight and health while recovering.
You may not realize, but there is a chance that you could be ignoring the warning signs of oral cancer. The mouth has one of the highest rates of cancer among all cancers. Here are some ways that you can protect yourself from oral cancer by practicing good mouth hygiene and getting regular check-ups.
Signs and Symptoms of Mouth cancer
- Pain or difficulty swallowing
- Difficulty opening the mouth
- Painful mouth sores or ulcers that don’t heal
- Red or white patches in the mouth that persist for weeks
- Halitosis, or bad breath
- Bleeding from the mouth that is recurrent
- Swelling that causes difficulty swallowing
- Numbness in the mouth or tongue
- Jaw or ear pain or speaking difficulty
- Dentures that don’t fit any longer
- Damage to bones, such as loose teeth
How can Dentist detect Cancer?
Oral cancers are linked to an increased risk of other types of head and neck cancers, so the doctor may also examine the larynx, behind your nose and the lymph nodes on the back of your neck.
If cancer is suspected, your dentist will likely refer you to an expert such as an ENT (ear, nose and throat doctor) or an otolaryngologist (head and neck surgeon) who will perform a complete head and neck exam in addition to one or more of the following tests.
Biopsy: A small piece of tissue from an area of suspicion in the mouth or neck may be removed with an incisional or punch biopsy. If warranted, a fine needle aspiration (FNA) biopsy of nearby lymph nodes may be performed. These samples will be examined under a microscope in order to detect cancer.
Pan-endoscopy: Endoscopes are used to ensure there are no other related cancers. Imaging tests may also be performed in order to diagnose and stage the cancer. These may include:
- X-rays, to provide images of the neck, mouth and jaw
- Computed tomography (CT) scan, for cross-sectional images to help determine the size and location of a tumour and whether it has spread
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), for detailed images of the body’s soft tissues to help determine whether cancer has spread to other tissues or reached the bone marrow.
CAJTeeth™ is a one-of-a-kind technology used at Royal Cosmognathic that allows for the restoration of teeth and tissue which is due to oral cancer. The rehabilitation of teeth allows for a more normal eating, jaw and oral function. Traditionally, any dental rehabilitation after cancer treatment, would be deferred by at least 2 years. But now with the advancement in 3D technology, the teeth are restored at the same time as that of cancer surgery.
The CAJTeeth™ process begins with confirmation of the suspicion during a biopsy or surgical intervention. This treatment protocol at Royal Cosmognathic was established based on medical findings and patient needs. Post treatment rehabilitation includes recommendations such as orthodontics, dietetics and speech therapy. As needed, as well as retention guidelines to ensure stability and longevity of restored teeth.
Options for Oral Cancer Rehabilitation?
In cases where the upper jaw resection done maxillofacial prosthesis like obturator constructed. This done separate oral cavity from nasal cavity. It helps the patient in speech and eating. Cancers affected jaw rehabilitation includes reconstruction of dental and maxillofacial defects to restore mastication and aesthetics to improve quality of life, to boost the moral for cancer patients.
Dental Implants with fixed teeth
After restoring the jawbone through bone augmentation, dental implants placed restore the physical appearance and function of the mouth. In dental implants, implant fixtures take the place of the root of a tooth. Instead of resting on the gum line like dentures, the implants placed into the jawbone to mimic the root of a tooth. During osseointegration, the biocompatible implants fuse with the surrounding jawbone. Once the metal root is in place, the dentist or surgeon attaches a new life-like tooth to complete the restoration process.
Dental implant treatment requires extensive planning and preparation to be successful. This includes correctly managing the soft tissue contours which is critical for aesthetics and hygiene, and for the health of these tissues. Some dentists will spend significant time shaping impermanent implants or placing customized healing abutments to help contour the soft tissues.
CAJTeeth™ allows for the restoration of teeth which lost due to oral cancer. The rehabilitation of teeth allows for a more normal eating, jaw and oral function. Traditionally, any dental rehabilitation deferred by at least 2 years. But now with the advancement in 3D technology, the teeth can have restored at the same time as that of the cancer surgery. Oral cancer is a life-threatening disease that affects the oropharyngeal region of the head and neck. This type of cancer is different from other cancers in that it is the only one that can have prevented through early detection. Oral cancer can also affect teeth and this can be managed with CAJTeeth™ technology.