Health A-Z

Medical Content Created by the Faculty of the Harvard Medical School



To reduce your risk of head and neck cancer,

  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, cigars, or pipes. If you smoke, get the help you need to quit.

  • Avoid chewing tobacco and dipping snuff.

  • Avoid excessive alcohol use. Besides being a risk factor by itself, chronic or excessive alcohol use multiplies the risk of head and neck cancer in people who also use tobacco. If you drink, aim for no more than one drink a day if you are a woman and no more than two if you are a man.

  • Practice good oral hygiene.

  • Visit your dentist regularly. A dental checkup includes an examination of the inside of your mouth.

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From Health A-Z, Harvard Health Publications. Copyright 2007 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. All rights reserved. Written permission is required to reproduce, in any manner, in whole or in part, the material contained herein. To make a reprint request, contact Harvard Health Publications. Used with permission of StayWell.

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