Mouth Cancer Action Month, organised by the British Dental Health Foundation and sponsored by Denplan, is taking place throughout November and to go alongside the Blue Ribbon Appeal – the campaign’s symbol – the charity wants you to show your support for mouth cancer awareness by turning yourself blue as part of Blue Wednesday.
Chief Executive of the British Dental Health Foundation, Dr Nigel Carter OBE, explained how easy it is to take part: “On Wednesday we want to see everybody turning blue. It can be a jumper or a shirt, a tie, a hat or even a pair of shoes. It’s entirely up to you. Just as long as it’s blue.
“Grab a group of friends or persuade your work colleagues to do the same. Send round an invitation for them to join you by wearing something blue.
“Chances are you will have something blue in your wardrobe, but we’d like you to be more creative than that! Why not find something from a charity shop that raises money for cancer? You will be helping two great causes that way!”
Blue Wednesday is part of Mouth Cancer Action Month, a campaign to raise awareness of mouth cancer by increasing education about the early warning signs and symptoms and promoting early detection and its role in saving lives.
“Blue Wednesday is an incredibly easy way to get involved in Mouth Cancer Action Month, and we want to see loads of pictures of your event, who knows you may even see yourself in our gallery,” added Dr Carter.
“For mouth cancer patients, their cancer blues will almost never leave them. There will always be a reminder of what they went through every day. Whether it’s their speech, their ability to eat and drink, or even just the ability to breathe properly, there is no getting away from it.
“Mouth cancer cases have topped 7,000 a year in the UK1 with more than twice as many men than women are suffering, so, we all need everyone to do their bit to help spread awareness of this deadly disease.
“Share your pictures on social media using #mouthcanceraction while encouraging your friends and followers to be ‘mouthaware’ by knowing the early warning signs and symptoms of mouth cancer, along with the factors which out us more at risk.”
Mouth cancer can strike in a number of places, including the lips, tongue, gums and cheek. Given that early detection is so crucial for survival, it’s extremely important that we all know what to look out for – for both ourselves and our patients.
Please encourage patients and your followers on social media to look out for any changes in the mouth. Ulcers which do not heal in three weeks, red and white patches in the mouth, and any unusual lumps or swellings in the mouth or head and neck area – if any of these are noticed, it is essential that they tell their dentist or doctor immediately.