Tag Archives: oral cancer

Is Your Mouthwash Too Strong?

Is My Mouthwash to Strong

Too Much Alcohol Content in Mouthwash Can Have Adverse Effects

Using mouthwash has its pros and cons.  Even though mouthwash is an effective tool for preventing plaque build up, stopping cavities from forming and freshening breath, it can have some adverse affects due to its alcohol content.

One of the warnings given by the dentists to their patients is to avoid using mouthwashes that provide high alcohol content. High alcohol content in mouthwash gives your mouth a burning sensation.  Very high alcohol content can irritate the sensitive tissue in your mouth.  For some people, this can cause ulcers and dry mouth.  It can also alter taste. So, if you are experiencing any of these symptoms and find it hard to keep the mouthwash in your mouth for the recommended time, then it isn’t the right mouthwash for you.

Another potential adverse affect to using mouthwash is the possibility of it causing oral or pharyngeal cancer. An Australian Researcher claimed to have found sufficient evidence to link the alcohol content in mouthwash to oral cancer (source) but it has thus far not been accepted as conclusive evidence (source and source). What scientist agree on is that the high intake of alcohol in mouthwash can increase the risk of cancer.  This is associated with regular and prolonged use of mouthwashes that contain high levels of alcohol and possibly may increase a persons risk.

Bottom line, if you are using a mouthwash and feel a burning sensation, then chances are that mouthwash is not the right choice for you.  It could be causing more damage then good.  Pick a mouthwash with a lower alcohol content for best oral health results.

How To Use Mouthwash Properly

  1. First, brush and floss your teeth.
  2. Pour the correct amount of mouthwash according to the manufacturer into your mouth.
  3. Rinse and swish vigorously in your mouth for 30-60 seconds.
  4. At this point you may choose to spit this solution out and use new solution to gargle, or you may use the current solution in your mouth.
  5. Gargle the solution for 30-60 seconds as well. 30-60 seconds might seem long but it is important to do because a lot of the bacteria that causes bad breath reside in the back of the mouth by the throat.
  6. Spit out the solution in the sink.

Mouth Cancer and the HPV Virus

oral cancer prevention

The human papilloma virus (HPV) is one of the most common virus groups in the world to affect the skin and mucosal areas of the body. Over eighty types of HPV have been identified. Different types of the human papillomavirus are known to infect different parts of the body. It infects the epithelial cells of skin and mucosa. The epithelial surfaces include all areas covered by skin and/or mucosa such as the mouth, throat, tongue, tonsils, vagina, penis, and anus. Infection with the virus occurs when these areas come into contact with a virus, allowing it to transfer between epithelial cells.

A study published in The New England Journal of Medicine showed that those infected with HPV were 32 times more likely to develop oral or throat cancers. This finding dwarfs the increased risk associated with two acknowledged factors for developing these cancers: smoking (three times more likely to develop cancer) and drinking (2.5 times). Research published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology found that HPV now accounts for more head and neck cancers than tobacco or alcohol.

If you have HPV or any oral health concerns Contact Glasscock Dental

8430 Univ. Exec. Park Drive Suite 610 Charlotte, NC 28262

Should You Drink More Coffee?

Drinking tea and coffee may decrease the risk of oral cavity cancer through antioxidant components that aid in the repair of cellular damages, according to a new study in Cancer Epidemiology (February 27, 2013).


To evaluate the relation between coffee and tea drinking and the risk of oral cavity cancer in France, researchers from the Centre for Research in Epidemiology and Population Health and the Versailles Saint-Quentin University conducted a population based case-control study with face-to-face interviews and standardized questionnaires.

Using data from 689 cases of oral cavity squamous cell carcinoma and 3,481 controls, the researchers observed inverse associations between oral cavity cancer and tea or coffee consumption. In particular, they found that exclusive tea or coffee consumption was associated with a reduced risk of oral cavity cancer.

However, these findings need further investigation in prospective studies in order to clarify the underlying mechanisms, the researchers concluded.

On the downside, coffee along with tea and colas, can stain your teeth. When you do indulge in staining beverages, do so in one or two sittings rather than sipping such drinks throughout the day. And brush after drinking them.

If you are a coffee or tea drinker, Contact Glasscock Dental with any of your oral health concerns.

8430 Univ. Exec. Park Drive Suite 610 Charlotte, NC 28262

Hookah vs. Cigarettes – Myths Answered

Many American campus-towns have begun to take on a Middle Eastern flair. The exotic practice of smoking flavored tobacco holds great appeal for students too young for the bar scene, who see hookah lounges and their colorful, communal water pipes as a great place to gather with friends.


The first myth is that the water in the pipe filters out harmful contaminants, making hookah smoking less risky than cigarettes.

FALSE. The smoke from hookahs has been found to contain high concentrations of aerosols, carbon monoxide, nicotine, tar and heavy metals, which are ingested at greater rates than when smoking a cigarette. The charcoals used to heat the tobacco for smoking add to the toxic mix. None of these harmful substances are water soluble, and they are not “filtered out” by the hookah pipe.

During a typical hour-long session, according to a 2005 World Health Organization study, hookah smokers inhale 100 to 200 times the volume of smoke typically inhaled when smoking a single cigarette. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control says the practice raises the risk of oral cancer, lung cancer, stomach cancer and esophageal cancer, along with reduced lung function and decreased fertility. Include the risk of spreading herpes, hepatitis and tuberculosis through shared mouthpieces and you have a recipe for a costly public-health problem.

Hookah smokers are also under the impression that their form of smoking is less addictive than cigarettes.

FALSE. Tobacco consumed in any form is addictive, and hookah tobacco is no exception. Though it may be sweetened, flavored and mixed with herbs and other substances, the tobacco remains nicotine-filled. The greater volumes of smoke involved translate into greater levels of nicotine exposure.

It is time for hookah smoking to be considered what it is: another form of
tobacco use, and one that is, if anything, more dangerous than cigarette
smoking. Public-education campaigns would help get the word out. Policy makers should take steps similar to those in 2009 when the Food and Drug Administration banned cigarettes flavored with clove, fruit or candy that might appeal to young people. Hookah smoking may look exotic, but its impact on public health is going to be all too familiar.

If you are a smoker, Contact Glasscock Dental with any of your oral health concerns.

8430 Univ. Exec. Park Drive Suite 610 Charlotte, NC 28262

READ MORE on the unhappy hookah http://online.wsj.com