Search This Blog

Sunday, February 24, 2013

What is Oral Lichen Planus ?

According to MayoClinic.Com, this type of health problem is defined as ........... an inflammatory condition that affects mucous membranes inside one's mouth. They may appear as white, or lacy patches appearing as  red, swollen tissues; or open sores. These lesions may cause burning, pain, or other discomfort. However, it is not contagious. Such disorder occurs when the immune system mounts an attack against cells of the oral mucous membranes. The reason for this abnormal immune response is unknown. It can be an ongoing (chronic) condition. Treatments that suppress the immune system abnormalities may improve more severe lesions and lessen pain. Patient(s) suffering from oral lichen planus may also have related lichen planus lesions on the skin, genitals, or other parts of the body, including the inside of the cheeks, gums, tongues inner tissues of the lips, throat and esophagus (will result in a narrowing of the esophagus, or the formation of tightened, ring-like bands in the esophagus that can make swallowing difficult).

Always seek medical assistance when you have the followings :
  • sores inside your mouth that don't heal;
  • white or red patches in your mouth;
  • pain in mouth;
  • repeated bleeding in your mouth;
  • any change in the way your mouth looks and feels
  • lesions, or sores on your skin, genitals, scalp or nails    
The cause of such problem is unknown. The lesions that appear are the result of inflammation controlled by specific white blood cells called T-lymphocytes. Normally, these cells are active at the site of disease, or injury. Doctors and researchers does not know what prompts T-lymphocytes to be activated in oral lichen planus too. Other factors which might act as triggers are :
  • Hepatitis C infection and other types of liver disease;
  • Hepatitis B vaccine;
  • Certain types of flu vaccines;
  • Allergy-causing agents (allergens), such as foods, dental materials, or other substances;
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, others) and naproxen (Aleve, others)
  • Certain medications for heart disease, high blood pressure; or arthritis
What to avoid :
  • Tobacco products;
  • Alcohol;
  • Rough dental work;
  • Poorly fitting dentures;
  • Poor oral habits, such as biting the lip, or cheeks;
  • Build-up of dental plaque, or tartar;
  • Stress
Oral lichen planus may increase the risk of oral cancers, particularly a type known as squamous cell carcinoma. Should anyone detected such symptoms, they must seek help as soon as possible i.e.,
  • Get oral cancer screenings annually, or as directed by your doctor;
  • If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation. Talk to your doctor to see if you should avoid alcohol completely;
  • If you use any tobacco products .. quit immediately. 

No comments: