Our office is not only dedicated to your smile, we're also dedicated to your overall wellness. We take a holistic approach to your dental care, which includes an oral cancer screening as a part of your regular exam. Like many kinds of cancer, oral cancer can be life-threatening if not diagnosed and treated early.
We have the skills and tools to ensure that early signs and symptoms of oral cancer and pre-cancerous conditions are identified. While these symptoms may be caused by other, less serious problems, it is very important to visit our office to rule out the possibility of oral cancer. The most common symptoms of oral cancer include:
- Red or white spots or sores anywhere in the oral cavity
- A sore that bleeds easily or does not heal
- A lump, thickening, or rough spot
- Pain, tenderness, or numbness anywhere in the mouth or on the lips
- Difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking, or moving the jaw or tongue
Our team is trained in a simple, quick screening that involves an examination of your oral cavity as a whole, and not just your teeth, to detect cancerous and precancerous conditions. Besides a visual examination of your mouth, we will also feel the tissue of your mouth and throat to detect any abnormalities. If we find an area of concern, we may perform a simple test, such as a brush test, which collects cells from a suspicious lesion in the mouth to be sent to a laboratory for analysis. If this test comes back atypical or positive, we may recommend a biopsy.
Aside from receiving an oral cancer screening during your checkup at our office, there are many things you can do to help prevent oral cancer.
- The best way to prevent oral cancer is to avoid all tobacco products and only drink alcohol in moderation.
- Maintain a healthy, balanced diet.
- Limit your exposure to the sun and always wear UV-A/B-blocking, sun-protective lotions on your skin as well as your lips.
- During your next dental appointment, ask your dentist to perform an oral exam. Early detection of oral cancer can improve the chance of successful treatment.
Our dental office is not only dedicated to your smile, we’re also dedicated to your overall wellness. We take a preventive-based approach to your dental care, which includes an oral cancer screening as a part of your regular exam. Like any kind of cancer, oral cancer can be life threatening if not diagnosed and treated early. You are the most important factor in the early diagnosis of oral cancer through routine screenings through our office.
Are you at risk for oral cancer? The most common factors include:
- A previous history of oral cancer
- Over 40 years of age
- Any tobacco use, such as cigarettes, cigars, or chewing tobacco
- Excessive or heavy drinking
However, 40 percent of oral cancers are found in patients who do not present with any of the traditional risk factors or any other significant lifestyle risks. This means that even if you don’t have any risk factors for oral cancer, you could still be at risk.
Advanced Screening with OralID
OralID gives us a step ahead of cancer with proven, optically based fluorescence technology in a hand-held device. OralID's fluorescence light source allows us to see any irregularities in your lips, mouth, tongue, and throat that may have been missed under normal incandescent light.
During your oral exam, we will use OralID to look for abnormal tissue. With OralID, we can identify and evaluate abnormalities in your mouth, such as suspicious oral lesions, precancerous cells, and cancer that may be difficult to see during a regular visual exam.
Remember, early detection of oral cancer can improve the chance of successful treatment. As us about OralID oral cancer screening at your next appointment!