Going to the dentist is not only about getting your teeth checked, receiving useful teeth and gum care tips or undergoing a treatment for your specific dental need. It’s also about preventing and identifying the early signs of oral cancer, which is highly beneficial for your oral and general wellbeing.
The Essence of Oral Cancer Screening
Oral cancer screening is an important part of the dental examination. Your dentist will look for cancerous and precancerous cells in your mouth. Without the aid of the screening tests, it would be hard to identify these abnormal cells. It is the main goal of oral cancer screening to find the signs earlier, when they are more curable.
During the screening, your dentist will look for signs of cancer in the lips, oral cavity (tongue, gums, and cheeks) and oropharynx (pharynx, back of the tongue, throat, and tonsils). Patients with a high risk of the disease may benefit more from screening. Heavy drinkers and smokers are at higher risk for mouth and throat cancers. People who belong to a high-risk group includes:
- Using different tobacco products such as chewing tobacco, pipes, and smokeless tobacco
- History of oral cancer diagnosis
- Excessive sun exposure
- With poor and unhealthy diet
- People over 40
Oral cancer screening is a pain-free process that usually takes about 5 to 15 minutes. If your dentist detects any potential indications of oral cancer, they will perform a biopsy, in which a sample of cells need to be removed for laboratory testing to determine whether cancerous cells are present. If you get a positive diagnosis, your treatment may need the assistance of various medical professionals such as a surgeon, radiation oncologist, oncologist as well as a rehabilitation and restorative expert.
Preventing and Reducing the Risk of Oral Cancer
There are no proven methods to prevent oral cancer. On a brighter note, you can minimise the risk of this disease by using the following tips:
- Avoid or quit smoking. Tobacco contains over 70 chemicals that are known to cause cancer.
- Drink alcoholic beverages moderately. Excessive alcohol consumption can irritate mouth cells, which make them susceptible to mouth cancer.
- Eat a nutritious diet and consume a variety of fruits and vegetables. Foods that are rich in vitamins and antioxidants may help reduce the probability of mouth cancer.
- Protect your skin while out in the sun. Apply sunscreen protection to your lips and use a hat that effectively hides your entire face from the sun.
- Visit your dentist regularly and ask your dentist for a mouth examination during every dental exam.
Ask your Gold Coast Dentist for Oral Screening Today!
Keep in mind that the earlier the signs of oral cancer are diagnosed, the better. For more information about oral cancer screening, consult your trusted dentist in Gold Coast here at Main Beach Dental. Your Main Beach dentist will evaluate your mouth for signs of mouth cancer during your dental check-up and examination. In addition, we encourage you to visit your trusted dentist in Gold Coast more regularly to check on the most common problems concerning your teeth, gums and entire mouth.
Claim your FREE Dental Consultation that includes: Dental Checkup, Smile Makeover, and Implant Dentistry. You are just one step away from having the smile you always wanted! Book online http://mainbeachdental.com.au or call us today on (07) 5503 1177.