Gum Swellings Sometimes Create Cancer Phobia

Benign (non-cancerous) Looking Gum Swelling

All swellings of gum are required to be checked by a qualified dentist. Agreed that most of the times– say in more than 95 percent of cases, it is due to Gingivitis and Periodontal disease (‘pyorrhoea’).
And the best results are obtained in case of gum swelling which is due to gingivitis in younger age group because in most of such cases, the gum disease has not yet invaded the underlying periodontal tissues.

The dental photograph that you are looking here is of 55-year old man who came with the complaint of gum bleeding in the lower front region. He gave history that he is suffering from this problem for the last two months. He is in great agony – he doubts it is some sort of Oral cancer!

Oral examination revealed there is gum enlargement in the mandibular (lower jaw) anterior region. Dentists do come across such cases quite often. First of all he was reassured that in all probability it is not a cancerous growth. He felt so relieved!

Gum Enlargement (with black outline) Moves Freely

This gum swelling is because of chronic gum inflammation which has caused gingival enlargement as shown by the black outlined area. The particular portion of enlarged gum tissue is mobile and bleeds even on slight provocation.

What is the treatment? – This enlarged gum tissues needs to be excised (removed) surgically. The removed tissue would be biopsied to know the nature of lesion. In all probability, it would come out to be a benign (means harmless in the sense that it is non-cancerous) growth.

Tobacco use in any form is not related to such a lesion — otherwise, tobacco does play havoc with our mouth. By the way, this man has never ever used tobacco in any form.

I also want to add that such lesions tend to jeopardize further oral health of an individual. This man has also stopped using toothbrush because he thinks toothbrushing is causing gum-bleeding. Instead he just uses his finger to clean his teeth with the help of some unspecified locally prepared ‘tooth powder’.

I indeed requires a lot of pursuance to bring any patient on line – there are so many myths and dogmas that sometimes one feels frustrated. But that’s not at all any remedy. What do you say?


About drparveenchopra

Dr Parveen Chopra is Masters in Dental Surgery.. with 35 years of experience in dentistry. For trying his hand in health writing, he studied Communication for seven years. He is a blogger since 2007- he enjoys writing in conversational style.
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