According to the National Institute of Dental Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), oral cancer has a high survival rate when detected early. Regular screenings by your dentist are part of a vigilant plan for early detection. The screenings can be done within a few minutes at your regular check-up. Your mouth, neck, face, and lips can be painlessly examined for any signs of cancer by your dentist or dental hygienist. If you have specific signs or symptoms lasting for two weeks, you may need to let your dentist or doctor know.
Tell your dentist if you have had any of these symptoms for over two weeks:
- Sores, lumps, or swelling in or around your mouth
- The feeling of a lump stuck in your throat
- Red or white lesions in or around your mouth
- Pain in one ear without a loss of hearing
- Trouble moving your jaw or tongue
- Trouble chewing, swallowing, or speaking
Potential risk factors
The exact cause of oral cancer is unknown. However, there are certain factors that can increase risk. Most people who have had oral cancer did use some form of tobacco. Heavy alcohol use also increases the risk for oral cancer. Studies also show that a diet lacking many fruits and vegetables can up the chances of oral cancer occurring. Increased sun exposure can cause oral cancer of the lip. The risk of oral cancer also increases with age. The disease most often impacts people over the age of 40.
Your dentist can help detect any signs of oral cancer
Dr. Jones and Dr. Harris of Mansfield Dental Associates can provide you with an oral cancer screening. If you would like to schedule a consultation, then call 817-473-6227. We proudly welcome patients from Mansfield, TX and the surrounding areas, including South Arlington, Kennedale, Southeast Ft. Worth, Alvarado, Midlothian, and more.