Oral mucositis is a common side effect of chemotherapy, as well as radiation to the head and neck area. In some cases, oral mucositis can be debilitating. The condition can lead to a variety of issues, including pain and increased risk of infection due to open sores in the mucosa. In some cases pain can be so severe that the patient is unable to chew or swallow. When this happens, oral mucositis can lead to nutritial imbalances. In very severe cases, oral mucositis can affect a patient so significantly that it becomes necessary to reduce the dosage of chemotherapy drugs.
Signs and symptoms of oral mucositis include:
• Red, swollen, or shiny #mouth and gums
• Sores in the mouth and on the gums or tongue
• Blood in the mouth
• Soreness or pain the mouth, sometimes extending to the throat
• Difficulty chewing, swallowing, or even talking
• Feelings of dryness, burning, or pain when eating
• Pus in the mouth or on the tongue
• Soft, whitish patches in the mouth or on the tongue
• Increased mucous in the mouth or thickened saliva
Unfortunately, a majority of cancer patients receiving chemotherapy or radiation of the head and neck experience oral mucositis. Chemotherapy causes oral mucositis because the same chemo ingredients that attack the cancer also attack the body’s white blood cells resulting in a low white blood cell count. Oral mucositis related to radiation is due to the inflammatory effect of this type of cancer treatment.
Smokers, those with poor oral or dental health, and patients who suffer from other diseases such as diabetes or HIV/AIDS are more likely to develop oral mucositis from chemotherapy or radiation treatments. The condition also appears to be more common in patients who have previously undergone chemotherapy treatments.
Oral mucositis should be treated as quickly as possible. Although the condition is sometimes mild, in more severe cases it can result in serious complications, such as electrolyte abnormalities and malnutrition. The nausea and vomiting that often occur with chemotherapy further complicate oral mucositis.
Fortunately, there are ways to treat or even prevent oral mucositis. Prevention #Oncology Mouth Rinse is an effective and affordable preventative that is readily available from a variety of popular online and brick and mortar retailers. Patients who use Prevention Oncology Mouth Rinse before starting chemotherapy or radiation treatments often report no symptoms of oral mucositis during their cancer treatments. For chemotherapy and radiation patients who are already suffering from oral mucositis, Prevention Oncology Mouth Rinse can effectively reduce pain and discomfort, prevent infection, and heal mouth sores associated with oral mucositis.