Lip & Oral Cancer
Oral cavity cancer is considered a type of head and neck cancer. It is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in any part of the mouth, including the lips and the oral cavity.
The oral cavity includes the following:
- The front two thirds of the tongue.
- The gingiva (gums).
- The buccal mucosa (the lining of the inside of the cheeks).
- The floor (bottom) of the mouth under the tongue.
- The hard palate (the roof of the mouth).
- The retromolar trigone (the small area behind the wisdom teeth).
Risk Factors of Oral Cancer
Tobacco and alcohol use can affect the risk of developing lip and oral cavity cancer.
Risk factors for lip and oral cavity cancer include the following:
- Using tobacco products.
- Heavy alcohol use.
- Being exposed to natural sunlight or artificial sunlight (such as from tanning beds) over long periods of time.
- Being male.
- Being infected with human papillomavirus (HPV).
Visit the National Cancer Institute where this information and more can be found about Lip and Oral Cancer or ask your cancer care team questions about your individual situation.
Learn more about how lip and oral cancer is detected and diagnosed.