Our office is not only dedicated to your smile, we're also dedicated to your overall wellness. This includes an oral cancer screening as a part of your regular exam. Like many kinds of cancers, 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 to screen your oral cavity to detect any abnormalities precancerous or cancerous conditions. We will feel the tissue of your mouth the sides of the tongue, floor and roof of the mouth and the back of your throat. 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. If a biopsy is recommended we will refer you to an oral surgeon.
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.
Remember, we are looking out for you!