Smoking and alcohol intake increase the risk for oral cancer!

The odds of a person developing oral cancer increase drastically when the person is a habitual smoker or alcohol addict. Cigarettes, cigars and pipes have the potential to cause the disease. Smoking and alcohol are among the major risk factors for developing oral cancer and can also cause cancer of the larynx and esophagus.


Cigarettes contain numerous cancerous agents, carcinogens. The carcinogens in cigarettes include tar, cadmium, benzene, formaldehyde, polonium-210 and arsenic. The chances of the individual developing oral cancer depend upon the length of time the individual has been smoking and the amount the individual smokes each day.

Due to habitual smoking, the tissues in the oral cavity get constantly exposed to cancer-causing agents in the cigarettes. This alters the normal functioning of oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes of these tissues. Eventually, this can lead to the uncontrolled growth of cells and to the initial stage of cancer.


Similarly, the consumption of alcohol will increase the chances of developing oral cancer. Alcohol can be the reason for cancer of the oral cavity, esophagus and larynx. The consumption of alcohol alone can increase the risks for an individual to suffer from oral cancer. However, the combination of alcohol and smoking can increase the chances even more.