On May 4, America mourned the death of hip hop artist Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys. Yauch, or MCA, had been battling cancer since 2009 when he was diagnosed with salivary gland cancer. Salivary gland cancer is fairly rare, but it’s important to be informed about the illness so that you can recognize the symptoms.

Three major pairs of salivary glands produce and secrete saliva into the mouth. Most instances of salivary gland cancer develop in the parotid glands, which are located near the ears. When a tumor grows on the gland, usually the patient notices a relatively painless lump in the affected area. Additionally, excessive drainage, facial nerve malfunctioning, and numbness are common indications of a growth on the salivary gland.

Regular visits to the dentist are the best way to avoid oral health problems like salivary gland cancer, gum disease, and gingivitis. To schedule an appointment, contact A Beautiful Smile at Lake Pointe today.