What Is Oral Lichen Planus?

Oral lichen planus is not a common disease—it only affects about 2% of the population—but it can be quite painful to the ones infected with it. Oral lichen planus is not entirely understood, but it can be diagnosed in a doctor’s or dental office in Lake Stevens, WA. Continue reading to learn more about oral lichen planus.

Lichen planus is a disease that can affect a certain number of areas around the body, including the mouth and esophagus. Oral lichen planus is the common type that is found on the tongue and gums of an infected patient. Doctors and dentists do not understand what causes lichen planus, but there are a few theories that suggest it is an autoimmune disorder or a product of genetics. Lichen planus can present in the mouth as raised, lacy, white threads on the cheeks. The gums can also appear bright red, due to erosion of the gum surface. Patients with lichen planus may experience discomfort or pain when eating and drinking. If a patient thinks that he or she has oral lichen planus, it is best to make an appointment at the local dental office for a consultation.

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