Approximately 53,000 adults are diagnosed with oral cancer every year in the United States. Some risk factors include: regular tobacco and alcohol use, some types of human papillomavirus (HPV), increased sun exposure to the lips, and a history of oral cancer. Although this disease can be dangerous, an early diagnosis and intervention is key to increasing your recovery outcome. Oral cancer screenings are part of our comprehensive new patient and periodic (recare) exams, and are offered at no additional cost to the patient.
An oral cancer screening is a thorough examination of your oral cavity, head and neck in search of indicators of oral cancer, such as white patches, lumps or sores.
As with many diseases, there are genetic factors that play a role in developing cancer. However, some lifestyle choices can increase your risk of developing this disease. Tobacco and alcohol use, for example, are two of the largest risk factors. People with human papillomavirus are also at higher risk.
It can be difficult to tell the difference between a benign health issue and the signs for oral cancer, which is why diagnosis should always be left to a professional. With that in mind, the most common symptoms include:
Mouth sores that don’t heal or won’t stop bleeding
Pain the ear, mouth, and face
Aches or difficulty when swallowing
Red and white plaques
Oral cancer is a serious disease that requires swift treatment to improve your outlook. If you think you might be developing symptoms, come to Seaside Dentistry right away. Call us today to book an appointment.