Oral cancer accounts for 2 percent to 4 percent of all cancers diagnosed each year in the United States. In contrast to other cancers, the overall U.S. survival rate from oral cancer has not improved during the past 50 years, mostly due to late-stage diagnosis. So it’s very vital to get examined for oral cancer during your dental visits.
Here’s a guide to know about oral cancer screening:
What Happens During An Oral Cancer Screening?
Oral cancer screening is an examination performed by a dentist or doctor to look for signs of cancer or precancerous conditions in your mouth. Most dentists perform an examination of your mouth during a routine dental visit to screen for oral cancer. Some dentists may use additional tests to aid in identifying areas of abnormal cells in your mouth. The best way to prevent oral cancer is through regular oral cancer screenings during your checkups. Your dentist won’t be able to diagnose you during the exam, but they will send a sample of your tissue to a lab to determine if it is cancer.
Oral Cancer Symptoms
When a dentist does an oral cancer screening, they look out for the following symptoms:
- Red or white patches in your mouth
- Spots that continuously bleed or don’t heal
- A lump or a hard spot in your mouth
- Numbness or pain when you bite down on your teeth
Do I Need An Oral Cancer Screening, If I Don’t Use Tobacco?
Usually, oral cancer has been known to be highly linked to tobacco use, but that is not the only cause of cancers of the mouth. Oral cancer is also caused by drinking alcohol excessively, lesions in the mouth, sexually transmitted diseases, and excessive exposure to the sun.
Meet the Bayside Dental Team
At Bayside Dental, we encourage you to have routine dental checkup. Your oral health is a top priority for us, which is why we include these important cancer screenings for every patient. We make sure that utmost care is taken for any kind of dental problems you face.