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Dentistry/Sores on cheek are they mouth cancer?


I have a lot of bumps on my cheeks (not painful unless I bite my cheek though) that I have had for several years.
I checked my mouth for signs of leukoplakia or mouth cancer, and I saw that all around my cheeks/mouth (not just on the bumps) large areas of the skin was kind of cloudy/chalky – slightly lighter shade of pink but not white.
The “bump” areas were not more discolored than other areas (in fact they looked more reddish/pink).
Would this sound like just normal discoloration plus canker sores that don’t go away? Or could it be leukoplakia/precancer or cancer?
And…..who should I see about this? A doctor (ENT???) or a dentist?

Dear Matt,

It's hard to say without an actual examination. Some people who habitually chew on their cheeks have little bumps on the cheeks. If you want to be certain, you should visit a dentist. If he is not certain, he should send you for a biopsy.


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Lawrence Spindel DDS,


Cosmetic Dentistry, Endodontics, General Dentistry, Preventive Dentistry, Comprehensive Dental Care


Former Clinical Instructor of Comprehensive Dentistry, and Prosthodontic Department New York University School of Dentistry. Also former instructor of Preventive Dentistry Columbia University School of Dentistry.

Ask Dr Spindel Dental Blog also numerous articles on (over 100 pages of original content)

1980 DDS New York University College of Dentistry 1981 GPR Manhattan VA Hospital

Awards and Honors
OKU 1980 Honor Society 1980 Long Island Academy of Odontology award for highest combined Academic and Clinical Achievement.
In 1997 he was elected to Fellowship into the International Academy for Dental Facial Esthetics

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