Call us 24/7

Mobile Oral Cancer Patient Hero Banner

Oral cancer

Oral cancer symptoms

Early signs of oral cancer may be mistaken for other problems, such as a toothache or cold. If symptoms persist for several weeks or months, it is important to see your doctor so that, if oral cancer is present, it may be diagnosed as soon as possible. Many symptoms caused by oral tumors may be due to other, less serious conditions or other cancers.

Some of the most common oral cancer symptoms and signs include:

  • Persistent mouth sore that does not heal
  • Persistent mouth pain
  • A lump or thickening in the cheek
  • A white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of the mouth
  • A sore throat or persistent feeling that something is caught in the throat
  • Difficulty swallowing or chewing
  • Difficulty moving the jaw or tongue
  • Numbness of the tongue or other area of the mouth
  • Jaw swelling that makes dentures hurt or fit poorly
  • Loosening of the teeth
  • Pain in the teeth or jaw
  • Voice changes
  • A lump in the neck
  • Weight loss
  • Persistent bad breath

If any of these symptoms appear or persist for weeks, your doctor may recommend tests to check for oral cancer. As with any cancer, it is important to diagnose oral cancer as early as possible, when more treatment options may be available.

Next topic: What are the types of oral cancer?