Mouth cancer is getting more common and health experts are getting more and more concerned about it.
What could account for the increase? Well, let’s look at the latest stats.
Mouth cancer cases have risen by more than a quarter in a decade, fuelled in part by changing sexual habits.
Almost 7,700 new cases were diagnosed in 2011, figures show. Men are most at risk of the disease, which is also caused by smoking, drinking and poor diet.
Many cancers in younger people are the result of the human papillomavirus (HPV), often passed on by oral sex.
The actor Michael Douglas highlighted the link in June last year when he blamed his throat cancer partly on oral sex.
Could it be? How? What’s the risk? Should oral sex be off the agenda? Would that be unrealistic?
Girls are already vaccinated against the virus at 13 to protect them against cervical cancer.
Campaigners are calling for boys to have the jab too in order to stem the “catastrophic rise” in cancers, given that it’s probably unrealistic to ask people to change their sex habits.