As you prepare to visit your family dentist, do you wonder why oral cancer screening is so important? Why do you need this regular dental service, as part of an exam? Do these checkups really find oral cancer? If your dentist sees signs of this disease, can it help save your life?
Why Oral Cancer Screening Is Important
Wondering why oral cancer screening is important opens a good dialogue between you and your dentist. Ask your dentist questions about the treatment and care you receive, so you feel well-informed about your dental health.
Oral cancer screening is important because this disease is one of the most deadly of cancers. It results in so many deaths because too few people find signs of the disease before it has ravaged their bodies. Only a dentist or doctor has the necessary skills for finding this disease early. If you wait too long to find your cancer, it moves into your neck lymph nodes and becomes very difficult to cure.
How Oral Cancer Screening Takes Place
The good thing about knowing why oral cancer screening is important is you can avoid materials that compromise your health, like tobacco. You do not even really know it is taking place. As part of your regular exam, your hygienist possibly uses a multi-wavelength light to find odd, discolored spots in your mouth. Your dentist then performs another examination, relying on his or her own education, experience and skills to screen for oral cancer.
The dentist then peers into your mouth and uses probing instruments to check all areas. You also undergo periodic dental x-rays. Meanwhile, you just sit still with your mouth open and feel no pain. This examination is quick and straightforward. It also includes checking your teeth and gums for signs of oral disease or tooth decay.
Signs of oral cancer your dentist sees include actual cancer or precancerous lesions. At an early stage, this means the dentist prevents you from experiencing cancer that spreads to other parts of your body. Cancer that has not metastasized proves much more easily treated than one already moving throughout your body. This is why oral cancer screening is essential as part of each regular dental visit.
Where to Receive Oral Cancer Screening
Your oral cancer screening takes place at your dentist’s office. During these visits, you gain help for other potential dental problems or diseases. Dental services you need for your healthiest teeth and gums include:
- General dentistry
- Restorative dentistry
- Preventive dentistry
- Sedation dentistry
- Dental implants
You should never neglect your regular schedule of twice-yearly dental visits. Doing so puts you at significant risk for tooth decay, gum disease, other dental problems, and oral cancer.
Talk to your dentist about your oral health and dental goals. Together, you establish a treatment plan to meet your goals.
Call Marketplace Dental Excellence today for your dental needs. Your dentist at Marketplace Dental Excellence also helps you understand why oral cancer screening is essential for your individual health. This is particularly true if you chew tobacco, smoke or engage in other risky behaviors. Schedule a visit at 480-397-0214 and get to know your new dental team.