Identifying Common Oral Diseases

Closeup of man's lips - Oral Disease Alameda CADental issues can be the cause of great discomfort, and a headache to deal with. However, many dental diseases can be prevented if the early signs and symptoms are identified and addressed. A few oral diseases, in particular, are especially common. Below details some of these diseases and their tell-tale signs.

Oral Cancer

Although not the most common of oral diseases, oral cancer may arguably be the most dangerous. Research shows that for about every 100, 000 adults, 10.5 will develop oral cancer. Early detection is very important in order for treatment to start as soon as possible. Some common signs of oral cancer include sores in the mouth, persistently bad breath, loosening of the teeth, among others. Regular check-ups by your dentist can also ensure that abnormal tissue is identified and biopsied in a timely manner. 


Oral herpes is among the most common of oral diseases. It is an infection caused by the herpes simplex virus. This virus is transmitted through close personal contact with someone who is infected and touching an open herpes sore or something else that has been in contact with it. This disease is the cause of painful blisters that are more commonly referred to as cold sores. The common symptoms are itching, burning or tinging in or around the mouth. Although oral herpes will usually resolve on its own within one to two weeks, there may be times where medicine such as acyclovir or famciclovir are needed. 


Due to the warm and moist environment of your mouth, the soft tissue in it is especially susceptible to a wide range of infections. Examples include candida infections as well as bacterial and yeast infections. Signs of these infections include patches on your gums, cheeks or throat that are white or yellow in color or the presence of small ulcers in your mouth. These infections are generally quite contagious. However, of identified, they are also quite treatable. 

Gum Disease

Gum disease is also commonly known as periodontitis or periodontal disease. Research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that 47.2% of all Americans adults have mild to severe periodontitis. This disease causes inflammation of the gum tissues and surrounding bone and teeth and has been found to be related to other chronic inflammatory diseases such as diabetes. If these early warning signs are missed or ignored, the progressive decay of the surrounding tissue and bone may be completely lost and the associated teeth may need to be extracted. Early signs of gum disease include swollen or tender gums, receding gums and deep pockets in between the gums and teeth, among others.

What If I suspect I may have oral disease?

If you notice any symptoms mentioned above, you should make an appointment to see your dentist. The team at your dentist has the skills and training needed to take a closer look at your mouth and provide you with a firm diagnosis and next steps. In some cases, surgery may be required. If that is the case for you, the team here at California Oral Surgery and Implantology is ready to help!

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