Book Your Oral Cancer Screening at Bent Tree Dental

Oral Cancer Screening in Dallas, TX | Mouth Cancer Prevention

It’s important to attend regular oral cancer screenings, even if it’s not something we enjoy thinking about. None of us like to confront the possibility of serious health issues, but taking action now can make a world of difference. Early detection of oral cancer significantly improves treatment outcomes, making a simple screening a powerful tool in safeguarding your well-being. At Bent Tree Dental, we offer oral cancer screening services because your health and peace of mind are our top priorities. It’s a quick and straightforward process that we can easily incorporate into your regular checkup. By keeping up with your routine appointments, you’re taking a proactive step toward maintaining your oral and overall health.

Why Should I Schedule My Oral Cancer Screening?

Oral Cancer Screening in Dallas, TX | Mouth Cancer Prevention

According to the American Cancer Society, nearly 59,000 Americans will be affected by oral cancer in 2024. While health screenings might not always be a top priority, they are crucial for early detection and effective treatment. Oral cancer, when caught early, has a significantly higher success rate for treatment, making these screenings incredibly important.

Regular oral cancer screenings are as routine and essential as any other health checkup with your doctor. These quick, painless exams involve Dr. Miller inspecting your mouth, lips, tongue, throat, and neck for abnormalities like lumps, sores, or discolored patches. They are typically part of your routine dental checkups and cleanings, recommended every six months. Having a screening annually or bi-annually during your regular visit is sufficient for most people to catch any potential issues early.

Am I at Risk for Oral Cancer?

Scheduling regular oral cancer screenings is essential for everyone, but it’s particularly crucial for those at higher risk. Knowing who is more susceptible can help you take proactive steps to protect your health.

Tobacco use is one major risk factor for oral cancer. Whether it’s smoking cigarettes or chewing tobacco, these habits dramatically increase the likelihood of developing the disease. Another significant factor is infection with the Human Papillomavirus (HPV), especially high-risk strains like HPV-16. This virus is a leading cause of oropharyngeal cancers, affecting areas such as the tonsils, base of the tongue, and throat. HPV-related oral cancers are becoming more common, particularly among younger populations.

While the average age of people diagnosed with these cancers is 64, they can occur in younger individuals as well. Over 20% of oral cancer cases are found in people younger than 55. So, even if you are younger, you should still be vigilant about regular screenings and aware of the risk factors.

What You Can Do at Home to Check for Oral Cancer

Taking proactive steps to maintain oral health is very important, and you can easily conduct self-screening right at home. This simple checkup takes just five to ten minutes, giving you peace of mind and helping you stay aware of your oral health between dental visits.

Begin by standing in front of a mirror with proper lighting. Carefully examine your lips and face, looking for any areas that appear discolored or abnormal. Also, check your skin for any crusty or eroded patches and red or white spots that might appear on your lips, face, or neck.

Next, gently press your fingers along the sides of your neck. Feel for any lumps, bumps, or thickened areas as you do this. These could be signs that something is not quite right and should be checked by a professional. Open your mouth and tilt your head back slightly. Use a flashlight or the light on your phone to inspect the roof of your mouth, looking for any irregular red or white patches. Then, pull your cheeks out one at a time to examine the insides of your mouth. Remember, you’re looking for red or white patches, lumps, or areas that appear ulcerated.

Stick out your tongue and take a close look at its surface. Check for any swelling, discoloration, or irregularities, and use your fingers to feel for any lumps or abnormalities.

Protect Your Oral Health and Call Bent Tree Dental Today

Incorporating a self-exam into your routine is important, as early detection significantly improves oral cancer survival rates. However, remember that this self-exam is not a replacement for regular screenings by Dr. Miller. We understand that adding another appointment to your schedule can feel like a lot, but consider this: a few minutes could make a significant difference in your health. Just as you wouldn’t skip a routine physical with your doctor, it’s equally important not to miss your dental checkups.

Contact Bent Tree Dental today to learn more and schedule your health checkup.

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