Monthly Archives: November 2018

Mouth Cancer Action Month Key Facts…

As Mouth Cancer Action Month approaches its final week we thought we would summarise some key facts and give details on further reading.

The signs and symptoms of mouth cancer include:

• A mouth ulcer that does not heal within three weeks.
• White or red patches in the mouth.
• Unusual lumps or swellings in the mouth, head or neck.
• Any persistent ‘hoarseness’.

Early diagnosis is vital. It increases our chances of beating the disease and gives us a much higher quality of life. Self-checks and regular dental visits are extremely important for spotting mouth cancer in its initial stages. If in doubt, get checked out!

Causes of Mouth Cancer

Around one in six (17%) oral cavity cancers are directly caused by smoking. The risk of being diagnosed with mouth cancer for a smoker is almost double (91%) that of a never-smoker.

Drinking alcohol to excess is responsible for around a third of all mouth cancers. Those who drink more than 10 units of alcohol a week could be increasing the risk of mouth cancer by 81%. For those who heavily drink alcohol and also smoke the risk increases by 30 times.

The human papillomavirus (HPV) type-16 and 18 are linked to
around three in four (73%) of oropharyngeal cancers and more
than one in ten (12%) oral cavity and hypopharynx cancers. Risk is
higher in those with more sexual partners.

Age and gender
As we get older, our cells and DNA become more damaged. This is either biological or from exposure to the other risk factors. We do not know why mouth cancer rates are higher in men, however, it could be due to greater exposure to risk factors.

The other risk factors associated with mouth cancer include: areca (betel) nut, paan masala (Gutkha), chewing tobacco, smokeless tobacco, x-rays and gamma radiation, asbestos, salted fish, formaldehyde, wood dust, overexposure to sunlight, environmental smoke.

One of the most important factors for early diagnosis of mouth cancer is self-examination at home. The other is to maintain regular dental visits, where visual mouth cancer checks are done as part of the routine check-up.

If you would like more information on then further reading is available. The State of Mouth Cancer UK Report 2018/2019 is the United Kingdom’s first comprehensive review into mouth cancer.

The report has been released by the Oral Health Foundation and Simplyhealth Professionals as part of November’s Mouth Cancer Action Month.

The State of Mouth Cancer UK Report 2018/2019 looks at the very latest statistics for the disease.

Read the report here… 

Here are 6 things you should know about mouth cancer…

It’s a sad fact that in the UK last year more than 8.300 people were diagnosed with mouth cancer and globally there are in excess of 300,000 new cases every year.

Mouth cancer cases are increasing and people diagnosed with mouth cancer has grown by around a third in the last decade. Mouth cancer is one of the few cancers which are predicted to continue to increase in future years.

Although risk factors such as smoking and alcohol are responsible for many mouth cancers, it is a disease that can affect anyone.

Here are 6 things you everyone should know about mouth cancer:

1) Regular visits to your dental team are so important. Attending appointments as often as they recommend makes it more likely that any problems will be caught as early as possible, including mouth cancer.

2) Mouth cancer cases are on the rise, but awareness is dangerously low. It is so important that we are more aware of the changes in our mouths and act on anything unusual by getting checked out by a dentist or doctor.

3) The earlier a problem is caught, the easier it tends to be to tackle. Mouth cancer is no exception. The smaller the affected area, the better the chances are of a full recovery. So, if in doubt, get checked out!

4) Long lasting ulcers, red/white patches and unusual lumps and bumps are three common warning signs of mouth cancer. It may be nothing but it’s always better to be safe and get checked than be sorry.

5) The everyday choices we make can affect our chances of developing mouth cancer. Smoking cigarettes significantly increases your risk of developing the disease.

6) Drinking alcohol over the recommended weekly limit will increase your chances of getting mouth cancer. Please stick within the recommended guidelines and maintain regular visits to the dentist just in case.

If you are concerned at all then please arrange an appointment with your dental team as soon as possible. Get in touch…

Be mouthaware: The 45 second check that could save your life…

Are you able to recognise the changes in your mouth? That’s the question posed by Smile Essential Dental Practice in Leicester as we support a charity campaign to raise awareness of mouth cancer.

The dental practice, based on Narborough Road, Leicester is urging Leicester residents to be more mouth aware and recognise the early warning signs of mouth cancer, for November’s Mouth Cancer Action Month.

With awareness of the disease remaining alarmingly low, Dr Niket Patel say’s that a simple 45 second check is often all that’s needed to identify anything unusual and be able to then seek professional guidance.

Dr Niket Patel practice principle says: “Early diagnosis transforms our chances of beating mouth cancer from 50 per cent to 90 percent so it is crucial that we know what to look out for and that we do not hesitate in seeking advice from a health professional.

“A mouth ulcer that does not heal within three weeks, red or white patches in the mouth and unusual lumps or swellings in the mouth or head and neck area, can all be potential signs of mouth cancer so it’s important to be aware of any changes occurring inside your mouth.

“Quite often it is easier to notice lumps and bumps on the outside of the body or to dismiss a mouth ulcer as benign. Most of us will spend at least a few minutes every day in front of a mirror brushing our teeth so while we’re there it makes sense to have a quick look inside the mouth.

“If you keep a lookout for these symptoms then a simple 45 second check really could save your life.

“If you notice anything out of the ordinary, please speak to your dentist or a doctor.”

Mouth Cancer Action Month takes place throughout November and is organised by the Oral Health Foundation.

With around 7,800 Brits diagnosed with mouth cancer last year, the disease is one of the UK’s fastest increasing cancers, with cases rising by a third in the last decade alone.

Survival rates of mouth cancer have not improved in the last 20 years and the oral health charity is concerned that too many are mouth cancers are being diagnosed at a late stage, significantly reducing our chance to beat the disease.

Chief Executive of the Oral Health Foundation, Dr Nigel Carter OBE added: “Mouth cancer can appear anywhere in the mouth including the lips, tongue, cheek, throat and gums.

“Mouth cancer can have a devastating effect on a person’s life, impacting on their breathing, eating and speech. Reconstructive surgery could also change their appearance while the experience often has an impact on confidence and self-esteem.

“By developing a greater understanding about the early warning signs and symptoms, the lifestyle factors which increase our risk, and recognising where to go if we notice anything unusual inside our mouth, we can detect mouth cancer early. This will not only improve our chances of beating it but will also reduce the amount of invasive surgery needed to treat it.

“During every dental check-up, your dentist will do a visual examination for mouth cancer and look for anything that might be a cause for concern. That’s why it’s so important to keep regular dental check-ups – it’s not just about the health of our teeth and gums – a trip to the dentist could really be a life saver.”

To find out more information about mouth cancer and Mouth Cancer Action Month, please visit

A WOW experience…

After a lot of online research, I decided to go to Smile Essentials for a consultation about a smile makeover and all I can say about my whole experience is WOW! Even at the free consultation, I was taken aback by the friendly service I received from all members of staff and as I was happy with the suggested course of treatment (whitening, gum contouring and tooth bonding) and I felt it was very good value for money, so I decided to go ahead.

Now that the treatment is all complete, I am absolutely over the moon with the results and it has left me with a smile I am so happy with! However, the main thing that stood out for me was Lina, not just the results she achieved on my teeth, but her warm, friendly and caring manner that puts you at ease at every visit. She works so closely with you throughout to ensure you are going to achieve your desired result and her attention to detail and desire to get everything perfect for you really shines through (which was great coming from a fellow perfectionist!).

This isn’t my routine dental practice but I was made to feel like I had been going there for years and if it wasn’t for the fact that I live 50 minutes away, I would definitely be switching dentists!

Miss A.A, Leicester.

Find out more about our smile makeovers…

A warm welcome for our new hygienist Kim…

We have recently welcomed Kim a Dental Hygienist and Therapist to our Smile Essential Team. Kim has brought along with her a wealth of experience and a kind and gentle chairside manner.
Kim has an extensive CPD portfolio and has undertaken additional training in tooth whitening. Kim particularly enjoys the challenge of working with nervous patients and children.
Being a Dental Hygienist and Therapist Kim will be a key member of the team. Her main role will be to carry out dental hygiene work for patients to ensure they have healthy gums. In addition to this, she can also perform some restorative and preventative work.
In her spare time, Kim enjoys netball, snowboarding and exploring the local countryside.