This is why it’s important that you choose a dentist who has expertise in oncology as well as dentistry. Today most dental professionals are trained in knowing how to spot oral cancer areas inside as well as outside the mouth, such as the lips and in the head and neck area.
Oncology is the field of medicine that diagnoses and treats cancers. With oral cancer rates slowly increasing, it is important that your dental team be up to date with oral oncology screening techniques. Every patient is checked and any suspicious areas are tested and biopsied.
Speak to your dentist if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Difficulty in swallowing or a sense of ‘fullness’ in the throat.
- Hoarseness that lingers and that is not from a cold or the flu.
- A sore in your mouth or around your mouth that does not heal.
- Any lumps in the mouth, throat or neck, painful or not.
- Any unusual change in your mouth, such as patchy white or red areas.
What are the for oral cancer? Here are a few; however, oral cancer can affect anyone:
- Excessive alcohol consumption
- Smokeless tobacco ( chew)
Your dentist will want to test and biopsy any suspicious areas. This is why in choosing a dentist who is skilled in oncology will provide quicker treatment and a better rate of survival.