Oral cancer can be very deadly; however, it has a cure rate of more than 80% when detected and treated early! The mortality rates are high because diagnoses comes too late. Very few patients are properly screened by their dentists. At our practice, we perform an oral cancer screening with every exam.
Our oral cancer screening process consists of a visual exam during which we thoroughly examine the face, neck, lips, and oral cavity. If you have a removable oral appliance, you will be asked to take it out for the exam. During your exam, we will look for swelling, bumps, patches of color, ulcerations, asymmetries or other unusual signs or symptoms in the mouth. We will often us a light, mirror, tongue depressor or other tool to help us see more clearly into the mouth and better evaluate the gums, cheeks, tongue, tonsils, and throat. The screening process typically takes five minutes and is very comfortable.
If you have any questions about oral cancer screening, please don't hesitate to ask. A quick oral cancer exam could save your health. It could save your life!