Why Cancer In Your Jaw Can Be More Lethal Than You Know And How Your Dentist Can Help

People who develop osteosarcoma or osteoblasts in their jaws have a very complicated type of cancer. It is located in a part of the body that is close to the brain and lymphatic system, and can quickly spread via your teeth. Here is how that works.

Cancer in Your Jaw Moves to the Dental Pulp

Cancerous cells reproduce rapidly. Either your dentist or your family doctor will notice that something is not quite right, and want to take an immediate X-ray. As those cancerous cells continue to divide and grow, they will move in on the root system of your teeth. Your teeth contain blood vessels, lymph vessels and marrow. Cancer loves these living tissues, and it will forcibly gravitate into the pulp of your teeth. Once cancer is inside your teeth, the cells could enter your bloodstream or lymph system and  reproduce even faster. The cells have immediate access to two major systems that can take it to anywhere in your body, and since the cancer started in your bones, it may look for entry points into the rest of your skeleton.

Catching Cancer Before It Spreads

With cancer in your jaw, the timing is critical, as you can see from the previous paragraph. You want to see a dentist and a doctor right away to make sure the noticeable malignancy in your jaw has not spread. Your dentist's X-rays of the area can shed light on how far the cancer has gone, and discuss with you some options for keeping it away from your teeth. Often, your best option is to pull the teeth closest to the cancer until you can see an oncologist and start a regimen of chemotherapy or radiation.

Very Rare, but Very Severe

This type of cancer is so rare that very few dentists ever see an example of it. Until the X-rays come back, your dentist may not know what to make of the bulge along your jaw. Even then, he or she might not grasp completely what it is he or she is seeing on the X-ray. Getting ahead of a very lethal disease, your dentist will send copies of your X-rays to your doctor, who can confirm what is going on, and then refer you to an oncologist while providing feedback to your dentist. If you are planning on a severe preventive measure such as removing your teeth closest to the sight of the malignancy, discuss this with your dentist right away.