Every year, over 50,000 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer in the United States. Getting an annual oral cancer screening from Dr. Sattout can help detect any abnormalities early and even save your life.
Did you know that when you get a regular teeth cleaning and exam with us at Laguna Pavilion Dental that we can also conduct an oral cancer screening? Oral cancer screenings are simple and painless exams of your oral cavity by Dr. Sattout at our practice, who will also ask some questions during the process.
Oral cancer screenings are recommended once a year starting at age 18. Dr. Sattout will be looking for any abnormalities such as lumps in your face or neck, lesions, red or white patches in the mouth, or any unexplained bleeding or sore areas in your oral cavity.
Why Are Oral Cancer Screenings Important?
Getting an oral cancer screening annually could save your life. Like many cancers, oral cancer is easier to treat when caught early. If left to progress, more extensive treatments will likely be involved, and there’s a chance the cancer could metastasize, or spread to other areas in the body. Even if you have a low risk for oral cancer, regular screenings are a simple way to be proactive about this disease during your regular dental appointments.
Risk Factors for Oral Cancer
There are some risk factors for oral cancer you can control and others that you can’t. Risk factors for all types of oral cancer include:
- Being male. Unfortunately, oral cancer is twice as common in men as it is in women, although the reason for this isn’t exactly known.
- Age. People over the age of 35 are more likely to be diagnosed with oral cancer, with half of all oral cancers diagnosed in people over the age of 62.
- Tobacco use. The majority of patients with oral cancers either smoke or chew tobacco, or have done so in the past.
- Alcohol consumption. People who drink alcohol frequently are more at risk for oral cancer than people who don’t.
- Diet. Not eating enough fruits and vegetables has been associated with the development of oral cancer.
Many cases of oral cancer are preventable based on these risk factors, but even if you don’t smoke or use tobacco, you can still develop the disease.
Symptoms of Oral Cancer
While Dr. Sattout will look for signs of oral cancer that he can see or feel, he will also ask you about any symptoms you may be experiencing as well. Symptoms of oral cancer include:
- A sore throat that won’t go away
- A feeling of something being stuck in the throat that doesn’t subside
- Problems with chewing or swallowing
- Unexplained numbness in the oral cavity or face
- Problems speaking or moving your tongue
Get an Oral Cancer Screening During Your Next Appointment
Getting an oral cancer screening is simple, painless, and could save your life. Contact us at Laguna Pavilion Dental today to schedule a dental exam and oral cancer screening with us at (916) 520-4270!