Oral cancer will statistically affect 45,750 Americans in 2015, and as an oral surgeon, Dr. Sedaros is adamant that regular screenings for this type of cancer are necessary to prevent this disease from progressing. Many people know that use of tobacco and alcohol are large risk factors in developing oral cancer, but recent research shows that kissing has surpassed both vices as the leading risk factor for developing oral cancer.

The reason kissing is causing so many cases of oral cancer is because of the human papilloma virus, or HPV. Eight in 10 people will be infected with HPV in their lifetimes, but the virus does not always lead to cancer. Some strains, such as HPV16 are known to cause cervical and oral cancers. In the US,70 percent of oropharynx cancer is caused by HPV16, according to Mt Sinai Hospital.

While this news is certainly surprising, the best way to curtail the development of oral cancer is to watch out for symptoms and receive regular screenings. No matter how you developed oral cancer, the diagnosis is serious. If you’d like to schedule an oral cancer screening, call Dr. Sedaros today.