Oral Cancer Screenings in Las Cruces, NM
Dentists are always checking for signs of tooth decay and gum disease during dental exams, but did you know that they check for signs of oral cancer too? If you believe that you are at an increased risk for developing oral cancer, ask our team about our thorough oral cancer screenings at your next appointment, or contact our friendly front office team for more information.
How often should I complete an oral cancer screening?
Every time you visit the dentist for a cleaning and exam, your dentist is examining your teeth, gums, and mouth for signs of a variety of dental issues, including oral cancer. If you are at a higher risk for developing oral cancer, we would be happy to conduct extra thorough oral cancer screenings during your routine appointments. If you notice any abnormalities or symptoms of oral cancer, you will want to discuss them with our team during your appointments as well.
What are the signs and symptoms of oral cancer?
Oral cancer does not always come with symptoms that are noticeable by the patient, but should you notice any of these symptoms, please contact our office so we can advise.
- Consistent Sore Throat or Mouth Pain
- Mouth Sores That Don’t Heal
- Red or White Patches in Mouth
- Swelling in Mouth or Jaw
- Lump Inside Mouth or Neck
- Difficulty Swallowing or Moving Tongue
What are the risk factors of oral cancer?
Patients who are over forty years old are at an increased risk of developing oral cancer, and men are twice as likely to develop oral cancer than women. Studies have shown that frequent smoking and alcohol consumption also increases a patients’ risk for developing oral cancer, and sun exposure can have an effect as well. Some patients have a family history of oral cancer, which typically means they are at an increased risk of developing oral cancer too.
Is oral cancer preventable or treatable?
There is no explicit way to prevent oral cancer, but you can lower your risk by decreasing your alcohol consumption, tobacco use, and sun exposure. Oral cancer is also highly curable when it is diagnosed and treated in its early stages, which is why we always encourage patients to schedule regular dental appointments so our team can detect oral cancer early when it is easier to treat. If you’d like to schedule an oral cancer screening with a dentist in Las Cruces, please get in touch with our team.