There are certain risk factors for oral cancer that are important to be mindful about. Along with routine oral cancer screenings from your dentist, it is encouraged to check for any early signs of oral cancer every so often, especially if you meet one or more of the criteria for being at higher risk. By understanding…
3 Reasons To Get an Oral Cancer Screening
Current oral cancer screening protocols are always available and can assist dentists in knowing exactly what to do and what to look for when they are screening their patients for oral cancer. When you make regular trips to the dental office you should expect your dentist to periodically check your mouth, and for a few different types of cancers.
Know that a professional dentist will make it a top priority to check their patients for oral cancer every time they see a patient. If you are not sure how often your dentist is checking your mouth for oral cancer, simply ask at your next dental appointment. Taking control of your oral health is essential to your having good overall health.
Some of the signs a dentist will look for when checking a patient for oral cancer include a sore inside the mouth that will not go away, pain inside the mouth or near the ear area, and any soreness or lumps in the neck area. The dentist should ask the patient if they have a sore throat that just will not go away. The dentist will also ask if the patient feels hoarse when they talk, or if they are having any difficulty swallowing.
If any of any of these signs are present, we highly recommend making a dentist appointment as soon as possible. By identifying signs of oral cancer early on, we can recommend the next course of action to be as proactive as possible instead of reactive. Early treatment will be the key to increasing the potential for remission or beating cancer.
3 reasons why an oral cancer screening is necessary
The following are three reasons why everyone should make sure that they are getting an oral cancer screening at least once a year. Current statistics tell us that early cancer detection increases the survival rate by about 20 percentage points.
1. It can save your life
This is not an understatement. If cancer is left undetected, it will spread.
2. It only takes a few minutes
A few minutes of thoroughly inspecting the mouth is well worth the time spent, as finding cancer in its earliest stages gives patients the best chance for a successful recovery.
3. A family history
When other people in the family have been diagnosed with oral cancer, this increases one’s risk. Due to this higher risk, it is suggested to see a dentist every three months, until the dentist decides otherwise.
The fact that mouth cancers can spread quickly makes it really important for every dental patient to get an oral cancer screening at least once a year. While every six months is indeed a much better option, having a professional dentist check your mouth for potential cancers at least once a year is one of the best ways to ensure you have a healthy mouth.
If you have any questions at all regarding oral cancer and would like more information on what you can do in order to protect yourself, we invite you to contact us at your earliest convenience.
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