Oral Cancer Screening
According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, nearly 50,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral oropharyngeal cancer this year. It will cause over 9,750 deaths, killing roughly 1 person per hour, 24 hours per day.
While the chances are you do not have oral cancer, wouldn’t it be nice to be sure? And, if you should receive a positive diagnosis, early detection is critical to a healthy outcome.
That’s why, in addition to regular visits to your dentist, if you experience any of the following symptoms, please consider making an appointment with your dentist:
- A sore that doesn’t heal
- A sore that bleeds
- A growth, lump or thickening of the skin or lining of your mouth
- Loose teeth
- Poorly fitting dentures
- Tongue pain
- Jaw pain or stiffness
- Difficult or painful chewing
Dr. William Pippin of Pippin Dental Care in Sevierville, Tennessee encourages routine dental visits, as well as non-routine visits that get to the heart of unknown symptoms.
Routine dental visits allow your dentist to check for signs of oral cancer and other dental issues.
Oral Cancer Screenings
Technology has come so far that dentists now have the tools to detect signs of trouble well before the symptoms become obvious. As noted above, early detection of problems can often mean the difference between treating a serious oral health condition and taking a few simple measures to prevent a small issue from becoming bigger.
Aside from routine dental visits, any unexplainable changes in your teeth and gums should be examined by your dentist as soon as possible. Our Sevierville dental team is eminently qualified to address any aspect of your oral health.
Oral Pathology and Biopsy
Oral cancer screening can be performed by a dentist. If your dentist discovers any suspicious tissue (lesion), you may be referred to a specialist known as an oral pathologist for diagnosis and treatment.
Treatment can include both oral pathology and biopsy. Oral pathology entails assessing and treating disorders of the mouth and maxillofacial area. This specialty utilizes a variety of different tests to discover abnormalities in the mouth. Tests usually include in-office examination, radiographic, biochemical, and microscopic analyses. The assessment is intended to identify ulcers, mumps, mouth and throat cancer, salivary gland disorders, and odontogenic infections.
Oral pathologists often perform biopsies for dentists and other physicians. A biopsy is performed by taking a sample of tissue to discover if it is diseased.
In dentistry, the primary goal of a biopsy is to determine if a patient has some form of oral cancer.
So continue to visit your dentist for routine checkups. Not only will it help ensure your oral health, it may also help to uncover serious health issues. And, if you discover an abnormality with your teeth or gums between appointments, do not hesitate to call us. We’re here when you need us!