Oral Cancer Screening
Oral cancer is one of the most common cancers today and has one of the lowest survival rates. Thousands of new cases are reported each year. As with most cancers, early detection is the key to treatment.
When you’re a patient at Dr. Kevin S. Bone, D.D.S., you benefit from an oral cancer screening at each visit.
Oral cancer can occur anywhere in the mouth, but the tongue appears to be the most common location. Cancer also can appear on your lips, gums, and other soft tissues in your mouth.
Oral Cancer Warning Signs
Early signs of oral cancer include lumps, patchy areas and lesions, or breaks in the tissues of the mouth. In many cases, these abnormalities are not painful in the early stage, making self-diagnosis difficult.
Other warning signs include:
- Hoarseness or difficulty swallowing
- Unusual bleeding or persistent sores in the mouth that won’t heal
- Lumps or growths in nearby areas, such as the throat or neck
Oral Cancer Prevention Tips
Two of the biggest causes of oral cancer are tobacco and alcohol use. Certain kinds of foods and overexposure to the sun also are linked to oral cancer. Some experts believe certain oral cancer risk factors are hereditary.
A diet rich in fruits and vegetables is one of the best defenses against oral cancer. Maintaining good oral hygiene, and regular dental checkups, are highly recommended to prevent cancer.