Oral cancer screenings are an essential part of your dental care. These screenings help our dentist detect any abnormalities in your mouth that may indicate the presence of cancerous cells. Early detection is critical to successfully treating and beating this disease.
At J. Whitley Wills, DDS, our dentist in Memphis, TN, will perform an oral cancer screening during your regular checkup. During the exam, the dentist will inspect your mouth for signs of oral cancer. This includes looking for red or white patches on your gums or tongue, as well as lumps or bumps.
If the dentist finds anything suspicious, they will perform a biopsy. A biopsy involves removing a small tissue sample from the abnormal area and sending it to a lab for testing. If the test comes back positive, then further testing will be done to determine the extent of the cancer.
The Benefits of Oral Cancer Screenings
- Regular oral cancer screenings in Memphis, TN, can detect signs of oral cancer at an early stage, increasing the chances of successful treatment and a full recovery.
- When oral cancer is diagnosed early, the prognosis is often more favorable, leading to higher survival rates and a better quality of life for affected individuals.
- Oral cancer screenings are non-invasive and typically quick, providing a timely and convenient way to assess and monitor oral health.
- Oral cancer screenings can identify precancerous lesions or areas with a higher risk of developing cancer, allowing for preventive measures or monitoring to reduce the risk of cancer development.
- Regular screenings offer peace of mind by assuring that your oral health is being carefully monitored, reducing anxiety related to potential oral health issues.
- Detecting and treating oral cancer at an early stage is more cost-effective than addressing advanced-stage cancer, which may require more extensive and expensive treatments.
How Can I Prevent Oral Cancer?
While there is no way to prevent oral cancer completely, there are things you can do to reduce your risk. First, avoid tobacco products. Smoking cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco, or using snuff can increase your risk of developing oral cancer. Second, limit your alcohol consumption. Excessive alcohol can also increase your risk of oral cancer.
Third, eat a healthy diet full of fruits and vegetables. Fourth, exercise regularly and maintain a healthy weight. Finally, practice good oral hygiene habits by brushing twice daily, flossing daily, and seeing your dentist every six months for a cleaning and checkup.
Timely diagnosis and treatment can prevent the spread of cancer and related complications, preserving oral function, appearance, and overall quality of life. For the best care, visit J. Whitley Wills, DDS, at 59 S Idlewild St., Memphis, TN 38104, or call (901) 726-9525.