While examining the inside of the mouth is already a typical part of a regular dental check-up, for many people it is also worth scheduling an appointment for an oral cancer screening. The American Cancer Society predicts that more than 53,000 people will be diagnosed with oropharyngeal or oral cavity cancer in 2020, and together…
What Happens During an Oral Cancer Screening?
Seeing your dentist for an oral cancer screening can help improve your dental and general health. The goal of this test is to look for any sign of precancerous and cancerous tissues in your oral cavity. Early detection often results in a good possibility of removing cancer. If you want to know what happens in an oral cancer screening, here are the details.
Getting a full night’s sleep before the oral cancer screening the following day can help clear the mind. This exam does not need specific preparation at all. Arriving early at the dental clinic can provide enough time for filling any form. The dentist will perform the screening during a routine dental check.
What to expect
The dentist will look inside the patient’s mouth. The aim is to see if there are mouth sores. An oral cancer screening can also check for white or red patches. The dentist will also feel for lumps or an abnormal growth in the mouth. Checking the neck and throat for lumps is also part of the screening.
A dentist may choose to use more tests to help establish a solid diagnosis. One is an oral cancer screening light. This test involves shining a light into the patient’s mouth. This light makes healthy tissues look dark. Abnormal tissue appears white.
The other exam is an oral cancer screening dye. The patient will rinse with a blue dye. The abnormal cells will absorb the blue dye. This will show the location and size of these tissues.
The dentist will make some recommendations if there are precancerous or cancerous tissues in the patient’s mouth. A biopsy involves the removal of some sample cells. The lab will test these samples. This will confirm if the tissues have precancerous or cancerous cells.
The dentist could then refer the patient to a doctor in the field of cancer diagnosis and then treatment. This healthcare professional can help focus on the treatment of cancerous cells. A follow-up visit will allow the dentist to see if the abnormal section of the mouth has changed. The growth of the abnormal cell will also be under consideration.
Teaching the patient about oral cancer is part of an oral cancer screening in many clinics. This will help the patient understand the situation more. Early detection of precancerous and cancerous lesions is the goal of an oral cancer screening. The early stage of any cancer is the easiest to treat and cure.
An oral cancer screening can make the patient understand the risks of oral cancer. Consuming tobacco and drinking huge amounts of alcoholic drinks are clear risk factors. A history of heavy sun exposure can increase a patient’s risk of developing oral cancer. A past diagnosis of oral cancer is also another risk factor.
Getting an oral cancer screening during your routine dental check is important
Detecting signs of oral cancer is crucial for an immediate cure. Early detection is equal to early treatment. A collaboration between you and your dentist can make the treatment more potent. This makes oral cancer screening a good way to check your oral and general health.
Are you considering oral cancer screening in the Allendale Charter Twp area? Get more information at https://www.grandvalleydentistry.com.
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