During a new patient appointment, it is common for healthcare providers, especially dentists, to conduct as part of a more extensive checkup, a test for oral cancer.
Screening for oral cancer can be done quickly and non-invasive procedure to detect signs or symptoms of oral cancer or precancerous conditions.
Here’s what you can expect during an oral cancer screening:
- Visual Examination: The healthcare provider will start by visually inspecting your face, neck, lips, and inside your mouth. They will look for any abnormalities, such as sores, discolorations, lumps, or swelling.
- Physical Examination: The provider may use gloved hands to feel the tissues in your mouth, cheeks, gums, tongue, and throat. They will check for any irregularities or changes in texture or size.
- Examination Tools: Sometimes, the healthcare provider may use additional tools to assist the examination. These may include tongue depressors, lights, mirrors, or specialized instruments to view the oral tissues better.
- Patient History: The healthcare provider will ask you questions about your medical history, including any risk factors or symptoms that may be associated with oral cancer. This helps in assessing your overall risk and identifying any specific concerns.
- Education and Awareness: The provider may take the opportunity to educate you about oral cancer, its risk factors, and the importance of regular self-examinations. They may also guide lifestyle habits that can reduce the risk, such as quitting smoking or limiting alcohol consumption.
- Referral or Follow-up: If the healthcare provider notices any suspicious areas or if you have any concerning symptoms, they may recommend further evaluation or oral and maxillofacial surgeon, to whom you should be sent. or an oncologist, for further assessment or biopsy.
It’s important to note that oral cancer screening is a preventive measure and does not provide a definitive diagnosis. If you have any specific concerns about oral cancer or notice any persistent oral symptoms, it’s recommended that you talk to a doctor about evaluating your condition thoroughly.
At Cornerstone Dentistry, we take your oral health sincerely, and always aim to deliver the best possible treatment. The goal of our preventive dental care services is to keep your mouth healthy and help you maintain good oral hygiene habits.
We offer comprehensive oral cancer screenings as part of our routine dental exams and will gladly answer your questions about symptoms or risk factors associated with the disease. Additionally, we can provide lifestyle guidance and tips to help you reduce your risk of developing oral cancer.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment and learn more about our preventive services.