Oral cancer is one of those things your general dentist might look for during a routine checkup. Any cancer that develops in the gums, lips, tongue, cheek lining, mouth floor and the roof of the mouth is classified as oral cancer. It falls under the cancer group called head and neck cancer. Symptoms of oral…
Here’s What Happens During an Oral Cancer Screening
Oral cancer can be frightening. But, with the help of regular screenings, oral cancer can be caught early on so that it can be treated. Screenings for oral cancer can be preventative and very helpful in the long run, but a lot of people are anxious about what will happen during a screening.
In this article, we go over what one can expect from an oral cancer screening. Being aware of what happens during a screening can be helpful for someone who has an upcoming appointment. Also, oral cancer screenings should happen regularly so it can be helpful to just be prepared in general.
Overview of an oral cancer screening
Examination of gums
The first thing that one can expect from an oral cancer screening is an examination. The gums are breeding grounds for oral cancer because they often times get overlooked each day during oral hygiene care. A physical examination and inspection will be given of the gums to ensure that there aren’t any abnormalities present. The inside and the outside of the gums and cheeks are felt in case there are any lumps or bumps that could indicate oral cancer.
Examination of the entire mouth
The dental specialist will also examine and inspect the entire mouth to ensure that any signs of oral cancer are not present elsewhere. The roof and floor of the mouth (as well as beneath the tongue) are also breeding grounds for oral cancer but these areas are more noticeable. The dental specialist will feel around for any lumps or bumps on the roof of the mouth or beneath the tongue.
Examination of the face and neck
The lymph nodes in the neck and jaw should be felt and inspected for any signs of oral cancer. The cheeks, lips and jaw joint should also be thoroughly examined because these areas are easy to overlook.
The dental specialist will also visually inspect the facial area to ensure that there aren’t any signs of swelling or asymmetry which can indicate oral cancer.
Oral cancer screenings also involve an inspection and examination of the tongue. This is one of the most important parts of an oral cancer screening. Gauze may be used to hold the tongue out so that all sides can be looked at. The dental specialist will also ask that the tongue is held out for a few seconds so that the back of the mouth and throat can be exposed.
Reach out to us today!
An oral cancer screening is very crucial to have regularly to ensure that abnormalities are not present. Dental specialists will thoroughly examine and inspect a person’s mouth and the areas surrounding it. However, if you have questions about oral cancer screenings, then reach out to our office so that we can help you further. Do not be afraid of the screening. In fact, you should be afraid to not get one because they can help detect cancer early.
Let our trained professionals go over anything that you’re unsure of. Give us a call or stop by our office today!
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Oral Cancer Screening.
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