How Important are Frequent Oral Cancer Screenings?
We all know that regular hygiene visits can help keep our oral health at an optimum level, but did you know we also take this time to provide a thorough oral cancer screening? Dr. Guido Walker and your Hygienist will look for signs and symptoms of mouth and throat cancer such as:
- Sores that won’t go away
- Red or white patches
- Pain, tenderness, or numbness in mouth or lips
- Lumps, thickening, rough spots, crust, or small eroded areas
- Difficulty swallowing, chewing, or speaking
- Difficulty moving your tongue or jaw
- Change in how your teeth fit together
Oral cancer kills roughly 1 person, per hour every day in the US, and much research has been conducted to identify major risk factors for cancer development. These include:
- Smokers and heavy drinkers over 50
- A history of the human papilloma virus (HPV) infection
- Men are two times more likely
- Patients over the age of 62
We take all of these factors into consideration through a detailed health history and careful monitoring of any changes in your lips, gums, jaw, and neck.
The most effective way to catch oral cancer early is through regular hygiene visits and communication with Dr. Guido Walker and your hygienist about any changes you have noticed. We will also invest in the latest technology, such as our VELscope that utilizes natural tissue fluorescence to detect any abnormalities earlier than with the naked eye.