Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Oral Cancer Screening At Dental Offices

Cancer is the health condition we don’t really associate with dental visits. But you should know that no one can tell you about oral cancer in a better way as your own dentist.

Here, most of the people think that oral cancer occurs in people who are alcoholic or smokers. The truth is every normal person can have oral cancer. This disease basically develops due to the presence of HPV virus. Although HPV virus doesn’t cause cancer in majority of carriers, it remains as the biggest reason for oral cancer. According to American Cancer Society, 30,000 new cases of oral cancer emerge every year. Probably this is the reason that your dentist needs to be good at diagnosing oral cancer.

When you visit the dental office on regular basis, your dentist finds it easier to study your case and compare your statuses. Furthermore, dentists also tend to identify abnormality in the tissues. Such abnormality is analyzed to find out if it is precancerous, cancerous, or not harmful. It is worth mentioning that it may get too late by the time when patients would find out about cancer developing inside them. Hence, they need to undergo screening tests to get diagnosed if there are abnormalities observed.

Oral cancer screening is basically concerned with the analysis of areas which are:
  • Abnormally grown
  • Sored and unable to heal
  • White or red discoloration
  • Anatomically unilateral
  • Fixed, nodular areas
Having that said, mouth is not the only area checked in this regard. Other areas such as head and neck are also checked in the dental office. Oral infection which can be cancerous doesn’t cause cancer only in the oral cavity but they can also result in cancer development in certain areas of head and neck. Hence, it needs to be ensured that your dentist is fully capable of screening these areas for effective diagnosis of cancer.

When dentists discover abnormal patches, they test those areas for a couple of weeks in order to find out if this is really the case of cancer. They can also conduct minor biopsy to extract some tissues from abnormal area for testing.

Having that said, it is pretty much important for the patients to contact their dentists if they, somehow, manage to discover any abnormality in their oral cavities, head or neck. Some people may be able to find out about the cancerous development in them in pretty early stages. Hence, they can approach their dentists or health physicians to quickly get the treatment started.