open access

Vol 69, No 2 (2019)
Original articles
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Awareness and health-enhancing behavior of oral cancer among high school students

Katarzyna Wnuk, Anna Maria Badowska-Kozakiewicz
DOI: 10.5603/2019.0009
·
Nowotwory. Journal of Oncology 2019;69(2):47-54.

open access

Vol 69, No 2 (2019)
Original articles

Abstract

Introduction. An increase in head and neck cancers has been observed. Recent findings show an association between those cancers and Human Papillomavirus (HPV) infection. It is known that HPV infections lead to oral cancers, especially among adolescents. Material and methods. An author-delivered questionnaire was carried out among 774 high school students. The survey covered questions about epidemiology, lifestyle, dental behavior, and oral cancer prevention and risk factors. Results. 29.1% of students smoke or vape. 34.9% of respondents think that HPV infections can cause oral cancer. It is believed that transmission occurs through sexual activity (72.2%), vertical (47.5%), horizontal (23.8%), and auto-transmission (14.6%). 20.4% of interviewees noticed changes in their oral mucosa and 20.0% perform mouth self-examination. Conclusions. Students do not have adequate knowledge of oral cancer. Smoking and drinking are still at a high level. The lack of knowledge prevailed in technical schools. Participants attending classes with an advanced curriculum in science had better lifestyle habits than others. There is a need to improve head and neck cancers education and awareness among youth attending technical schools and schools with non-scientific curriculums.

Abstract

Introduction. An increase in head and neck cancers has been observed. Recent findings show an association between those cancers and Human Papillomavirus (HPV) infection. It is known that HPV infections lead to oral cancers, especially among adolescents. Material and methods. An author-delivered questionnaire was carried out among 774 high school students. The survey covered questions about epidemiology, lifestyle, dental behavior, and oral cancer prevention and risk factors. Results. 29.1% of students smoke or vape. 34.9% of respondents think that HPV infections can cause oral cancer. It is believed that transmission occurs through sexual activity (72.2%), vertical (47.5%), horizontal (23.8%), and auto-transmission (14.6%). 20.4% of interviewees noticed changes in their oral mucosa and 20.0% perform mouth self-examination. Conclusions. Students do not have adequate knowledge of oral cancer. Smoking and drinking are still at a high level. The lack of knowledge prevailed in technical schools. Participants attending classes with an advanced curriculum in science had better lifestyle habits than others. There is a need to improve head and neck cancers education and awareness among youth attending technical schools and schools with non-scientific curriculums.

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Keywords

oral cancer, knowledge, risk factors, HPV, high school students, tobacco smoking, electronic cigarettes smoking, alcohol consumption, health education

About this article
Title

Awareness and health-enhancing behavior of oral cancer among high school students

Journal

Nowotwory. Journal of Oncology

Issue

Vol 69, No 2 (2019)

Pages

47-54

DOI

10.5603/2019.0009

Bibliographic record

Nowotwory. Journal of Oncology 2019;69(2):47-54.

Keywords

oral cancer
knowledge
risk factors
HPV
high school students
tobacco smoking
electronic cigarettes smoking
alcohol consumption
health education

Authors

Katarzyna Wnuk
Anna Maria Badowska-Kozakiewicz

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