Did you know Midtown Dentistry in Houston offers oral cancer screenings to patients? Not everyone is aware of this, or its importance to their health. This simple check could help save your life. Midtown Dentistry uses the Oral ID system to meticulously screen patients for the early signs of this disease.
Why Use Fluorescence?
Many dentists carry out oral cancer screenings simply by examining the inside of a patient’s mouth using normal light, and malignant and pre-malignant lesions may not be detected. Fluorescent light is a blue light that illuminates any abnormal cells when viewed through special glasses. It makes it much easier for Dr. Jonathan Penchas to detect early signs of disease that may otherwise appear normal to the naked eye. If any abnormal signs are detected, the use of fluorescence makes it easier to identify the best location for a biopsy.
Everyone is at Risk
Oral cancer is a silent killer and everyone is at risk, particularly those who smoke, but the fastest growing group of individuals diagnosed with this disease is young, otherwise healthy adults who have been exposed to the HPV virus. At the moment, public awareness of this cancer is still low, but approximately 43,250 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer this year. Your dentist is likely to be the only person who regularly examines your mouth, and dental professionals are often the first people to pick up signs of this cancer as they are specially trained to pick up early signs of anything being wrong. Early diagnosis is absolutely essential for treatment to be successful and less invasive.
You can help reduce your risk by keeping an eye out for early signs in between screenings at Midtown Dentistry. These symptoms include any sores that fail to heal, difficulty in chewing or swallowing, changes to the way your teeth meet together, having a sore throat or feeling if there is something stuck in your throat.
When oral cancer is detected at Stage I or II, survival rates are between 80%v and 90%. The problem is that most are detected in the later stages when the mortality rate for a five year diagnosis is as low as 43%. Have you had an oral cancer screening recently? If not, contact us to book your checkup now.