How Early Detection of Oral Cancer Saves Lives
According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, approximately one American loses the battle with oral cancer every single hour. The best chance for a cure is to catch it early on and begin treatment as soon as possible. That’s why Kraklow Family Dentistry emphasizes preventive care, including oral cancer screenings. The quick, simple, and painless procedure can potentially save your life!
What Are Signs and Symptoms of Oral Cancer?
Oral cancer can develop on the lips, tongue, gums, inner lining of the cheeks, the roof of the mouth, or any area in and around the oral cavity. During the early stages of the disease, it’s easy to miss its subtle signs and symptoms. That’s why routine dental exams and oral cancer screenings are necessary. Diagnosing and treating oral cancer early on is the best chance for a complete cure.
Tell-tale signs and symptoms of oral cancer include sores that do not heal, white or red patches, growths, lumps, difficulty swallowing, mouth or ear pain, loose teeth, jaw stiffness, crusted or rough spots, a hoarse voice, numbness, and a sensation of something caught in the mouth. Having one or more signs or symptoms doesn’t necessarily mean an oral cancer diagnosis. However, you should schedule a dental exam to rule out any potential concerns.
What Are the Causes of Oral Cancer?
Using tobacco products in any form is the leading cause of oral and head cancers, with more than 85 percent of the cases attributed to this harmful habit. It can also result from prolonged and unprotected sun exposure, heavy alcohol consumption, infection with the human papillomavirus (HPV), poor oral hygiene practices, and consuming an unhealthy diet.
Oral cancer risk factors include being male or over 45 years old, having a family history or genetic predisposition, having fair skin, and having a condition that affects the immune system.
What Happens During an Oral Cancer Screening?
We will ask you if you have noticed any recent changes or whether you have any concerns. The potentially life-saving oral cancer screening involves a thorough evaluation of the soft tissues and surrounding muscles to rule out any lumps, sores, patches, or abnormalities. We may also examine your throat and neck.
If we find any suspicious area, we may recommend a biopsy for further evaluation. Like many types of cancer, oral cancer can be life-threatening if not diagnosed and treated in its early stages.
Oral Cancer Screening Near Me
Contact Kraklow Family Dentistry in Waukesha, WI, to learn more about our potentially life-saving oral cancer screenings. Our team is all about early detection and intervention to maintain a healthy smile for a lifetime. We invite you to call us and schedule your appointment today!