What is Oral Cancer Screening: Importance, Procedure & Benefits

What is Oral Cancer Screening: Importance, Procedure & Benefits

March 1, 2023

What is Oral Cancer Screening?

It is an examination that a dentist or doctor performs to check your mouth for precancerous cells or any signs of oral cancer. The primary agenda of oral cancer screenings is to detect oral cancer early. This way, you can begin treatment when there is the highest chance of a cure.

Why Do You Need Oral Cancer Screening?

Usually, our dentist at 77568 recommends oral cancer screenings to patients at a high risk of mouth cancer, as they are most likely to benefit from the test. However, anyone can benefit from the screenings. Some of the reasons you may need oral cancer screening are:

  • Smoking – smokers are 50% more likely to get oral cancer than non-smokers.
  • Genetics and Family History – if other people in your family have had oral cancer, you are at a high risk of getting it too.
  • A Previous Cancer Diagnosis – even if you are in remission, use oral cancer screenings to ensure cancer does not reappear in your mouth.
  • Heavy Drinking – taking too much alcohol predisposes you to several health problems, including oral cancer.

What is the Step-By-Step Process of Getting Oral Cancer Screening?

Our dentist in La Marque, TX at South Star Dental examines your mouth to identify any anomalies that can point to oral cancer. The physical test is mostly visual but also entails using a gloved hand to feel the surfaces of your mouth. Any lumps, tumors, and lacerations will raise your dentist’s eyebrows to probe further.

  • Tongue and Gauze – you will stick your tongue out and move it left to right so the dentist can check the ventrolateral borders.
  • Palate Tickle – to check the areas where saliva pools, including the floor of the mouth and the oropharynx.
  • Neck Caress – the dentist will palpate the neck area, from the jawline to the clavicle.
  • Tonsil Check – the dentist will have you say “AAAHHH,” to inspect the oropharynx.

What are the Benefits of Getting Oral Cancer Screening?

Patients that have watched a family member fight any type of cancer are more inclined to appreciate the benefits of oral cancer screenings than the average person. Still, you cannot wait until it’s your turn to suffer before you appreciate the dental services available at your disposal. Some incredible benefits of getting oral cancer screenings are:

  • Early Cancer Detection – if you know anything about cancer, you understand that the earlier you catch it, the better. Routine oral cancer check-ups allow your dentist to detect any signs of precancerous cells in your mouth as early as possible.
  • Heightening the Chance of Successfully Treating Cancer – although many people lose their lives to oral cancer, it shouldn’t be the case. Your dentist has a high chance of destroying all the cancer cells in your mouth to save your life if you catch the disease early.
  • Curbing the Spread of Cancerous Cells – cancer is famed for quickly spreading throughout the body. Therefore, if you can detect the cancerous cells early, your dentist can take all the necessary measures to prevent spreading throughout your body.
  • Identifying Cancer before Symptoms Manifest – not all patients experience the same symptoms of oral cancer. For some people, it may take a long time before they realize any symptoms. Therefore, oral cancer screenings are an avenue to detect cancerous cells before patients realize any symptoms.
  • Preventive Lifestyle Choices – a screening test can help you understand whether you are a high-risk patient for oral cancer. In that case, you can make lifestyle choices that help lower the risk of oral cancer. For example, your dentist may recommend quitting smoking and taking alcohol if you are a high-risk patient for oral cancer.
  • Worry-free Life – living a life of fear compromises its quality. If you can do anything to relieve your worries regarding your health, be quick to do so. Oral cancer screenings help you know your health status so you live a life free of worries about the future.

Get Oral Cancer Screening Near You

There is no reason you must contribute to the statistics of the number of people that have succumbed to oral cancer. Instead, become an active participant in your own health by taking up proactive measures like oral cancer screening near you. Are you looking to get an oral cancer check-up near Texas City, 77591? Give us can or book a consultation with South Star Dental to get oral cancer screenings in La Marque, TX!