When you visit your dentist, consider an oral cancer screening, part of preventive dentistry services. You can’t put a price on safety and survival when it comes to cancer. Oral cancer is as deadly as any other kind of cancer, so get an oral cancer screening in Rogers, Arkansas.
Why You Should Get An Oral Cancer Screening
Oral cancer, like other cancers, involves the uncontrollable division of abnormal cells within the body. Oral cancer occurs on your lips, tongue, gums, throat, tonsils, salivary glands, and anywhere else inside your mouth. Few people realize the threat of oral cancer. You need oral cancer screening regardless of who you are, where you live, or your lifestyle choices.
Some risk factors add to your chances of having the disease. The most significant risk factor is using tobacco, a known carcinogen. Tobacco use via smoking or chewing tobacco contributes heavily to oral cancer. If you use tobacco, get an oral cancer screening immediately. Don’t pay the Skoal toll — contact Dr. Marcus Black, DDS for an oral cancer screening in Rogers, Arkansas.
Other risk factors include alcohol use, prolonged sun exposure, and poor oral hygiene. On average, oral cancer affects more men and people over 45 than other groups. However, anyone can get oral cancer, therefore everyone should get an oral cancer screening.
You should not wait until you find symptoms before receiving an oral cancer screening. According to the National Cancer Institute, oral cancer screenings should take place before symptoms begin to show.
Signs You Need An Oral Cancer Screening in Rogers, Arkansas
Oral cancer can be present for an extended period before it develops visible symptoms. This is part of the reason that an oral cancer screening is so important. When symptoms of oral cancer are present, they can include the following:
- White patches in the mouth: White spots on the gums, the roof of the mouth, or tongue sometimes indicate precancerous or cancerous oral tissue. It’s always best to have these areas inspected by a qualified dentist right away.
- Bleeding in the mouth: Bleeding in any area of the oral cavity, unless from immediate and direct trauma, is not normal. Unusual bleeding without a direct and explainable cause warrants further investigation.
- A sore or lump that does not heal: Anyone can develop a sore or lump in the mouth from time-to-time, but these usually heal rather quickly. Promptly seek an evaluation of any sores, lumps, or bumps that don’t heal within a few weeks.
What Takes Place During An Oral Cancer Screening
The first part of any oral cancer screening is a visual exam. The preventive dentist checks your face, neck, lips, nose interior, oral cavity, and soft tissue inside your mouth. If you wear a removable dental appliance, you must remove that appliance for this thorough check.
Your dentist looks for unusual swelling, bumps, discoloration, ulcers, or other abnormal-looking areas using light and mirror. He looks at your gums, palate, cheeks, tonsils, throat, and tongue. If the dentist discovers a questionable area of tissue, they can ensure you get the cancer care you need.
The second part of an oral cancer screening is the physical exam. Your dentist touches your head, cheeks, jaw region, chin, and mouth to feel for odd masses or nodules. The dentist also examines any areas where you suffer discomfort. Some symptoms of oral cancer cause pain, but not all oral pain is a result of cancer. Frequently, pain in your mouth results from problems elsewhere in the body.
Oral Cancer Screening Is NOT Diagnostic
Oral cancer screening in Rogers, Arkansas, is not diagnostic. Signs discovered during an oral cancer screening are questionable cells or abnormalities. These cells or irregularities are not necessarily cancerous. If the dentist finds a possible cancer symptom, they choose an appropriate course of action. Sometimes this consists of repeated oral cancer screening over time to see how the abnormalities change.
If you need further tests for suspicious findings, the dentist refers you to specialists. These referrals do not mean you have cancer. Detecting cancer cells, however, reduces future problems related to cancer treatment.
When your dentist conducts your oral cancer screenings, ask any questions you have about the procedure. Speak to your dentist about concerns, and ask how you can reduce the risk of having oral cancer. For oral cancer screening in Rogers, Arkansas, and any general dentistry needs, contact Dr. Marcus Black, DDS. Call us at 479.322.3548 to schedule restorative, cosmetic, or emergency dentistry, along with your oral cancer screening.