Oral Cancer Screenings
Oral Cancer Screenings

Cancer is a disease can affect anyone. There are many different forms of cancer known today, some of which even affect the mouth. Because our dental professionals care so much about the people that visit us here at One Dental Care, we do our best to protect our patients from the damage of oral cancer. While during your routine visit to the dental office your dentist may be able to help spot cancer, but due to the importance of finding cancer early, a proper oral cancer screening is recommended for a thorough examination of your risk of cancer.

How Often Should I Be Screened For Oral Cancer?

There are a lot of variables to consider when determining how often one should visit the dentist for an oral cancer screening. Here are a few of the variables to consider:

  • If you regularly drink large amounts of alcohol
  • If you smoke, vape, chew tobacco or betel quid
  • If you spend large amounts of time exposed to the sun
  • If you’ve previously had oral cancer
  • If you suffer from human papillomavirus (HPV)

During your next visit, make sure to inform your dentist if any of these match your circumstances. Your dentist may recommend regular oral cancer screenings.

What Does An Oral Cancer Screening Involve?

During such a screening, your dentist will first visually examine you. This includes more than just your mouth. Your lips, nose, neck, and face are all aspects of screening for oral cancer. Your dentist will look for swelling, discoloration, bumps, ulcers, asymmetries or any other abnormalities. The harder to see parts of your cheek, teeth, tongue, throat, and gums are checked with the same type of mirror that a dentist would use during your regularly scheduled examinations.

Next, the dentist will physically examine your oral cavity for any growths. This is done by touching your oral tissues, jaw, and the areas around your mouth to feel for lumps or masses. He will also be checking if you experience any pain during this process which could be a warning sign. In addition to these, a dentist may employ special tools to look for abnormalities or to test tissue samples for cancer.

We encourage everyone in the Billerica area to occasionally get a screening for oral cancer. If you have any of the risk factors mentioned above, or simply want to take precautionary measures, visit our local Billerica office and make an appointment with One Dental Care today.