Oral cancer is a collective term that can include cancers in several different areas of the mouth, including your lips, gums, cheeks, tongue, and the roof and/or floor of the mouth, to name just a few. Similar to other head and neck cancers, oral cancer can produce several different symptoms, and patients in Syosset who spot such signs early have a better chance at successfully treating it, if necessary. Today, we take a brief look at a few important things about oral cancer, including how your dentist can significantly improve your chances of early detection and successful treatment.
The common symptoms
Oral cancer develops when cells begin to change due to certain mutations in their DNA. Experts have not pinpointed a specific cause for such mutations, but the earliest symptoms of them are well-known and recognizable. By checking for such signs and, when applicable, requesting more comprehensive analysis (such as a soft-tissue biopsy), you can receive an accurate diagnosis as early as possible. For instance, during a professional oral cancer screening, your dentist might spot tissue abnormalities that might indicate cancerous cells, such as:
- Sores that bleed and/or refuse to heal
- Lumps, growths, or rough, thick patches of tissue
- Pain and difficulty swallowing
- Abnormal color or texture of certain tissues
- And more
The need for early detection
In cases where oral cancer remains undetected, the chances of successfully treating and recovering from it diminish. However, those chances are significantly higher when the condition is detected and treated in its earliest stages. That requires routine visits to your dentist office, where your dentist can thoroughly screen for oral cancer during your regular exam and cleaning. For enhanced diagnostic results, your dentist may use advanced VELscope technology, which utilizes a specially calibrated blue-spectrum light to highlight tissue abnormalities that are not obvious to your dentist’s eye.
Schedule an oral health exam today
Oral cancer affects millions of patients around the world, and sticking to a regular schedule of dental exams, cleanings, and oral cancer screenings can help you defend against it. For more information, schedule a consultation by calling Syosset Dental in Syosset, NY today at 516-433-2211 or 516-921-6930.