Oral Cancer Screening
It is estimated that 50,000 people each year are diagnosed with oral cancer and many others are undiagnosed. Oral cancer is treatable in the early stages, but it often goes undetected, as there are few signs or symptoms early on. The best way to catch mouth cancer early is with regular screening by a medical professional. As part of our general dentistry services at Topsfield Smiles, we offer oral cancer screening for our patients to protect their oral and overall health.
Oral cancer can affect the throat or mouth tissues. Cancer cells multiply in the tissues and create tumors or lesions that can be detected, but they tend to be slow-growing and occur over many years. Individuals over 55 are at the highest risk, but oral cancer linked to HPV is more common in younger people. Some risk factors for oral cancer include:
- Men are twice as likely to have oral cancer than women
- Tobacco and alcohol use increase risk
- Human papillomavirus (HPV)
- Overweight individuals have a higher risk
- Genetic health conditions
While risk factors can contribute to whether or not you are likely to encounter oral cancer, anyone can have this deadly disease. An estimated 10,000 people die each year in the U.S. from oral cavity and oropharyngeal cancer, but identifying it early can give you a fighting chance to survive this disease.
Identify Mouth Cancer Early
Most noticeable symptoms of oral cancer do not appear until later stages. Oral sores, lumps, pain or spots that persist should always be examined, as they can be symptoms of oral cancer. However, the best way to detect mouth cancer early is with a quick screening at our office. Our dentist can perform an oral cancer screening with annual checkups. It is not invasive and can be a life-saving procedure if mouth cancer is detected early in its treatable stages.
Your health is important to us at Topsfield Smiles. We focus on preventive dental and health care to protect your smile and your overall wellness. If you live on the North Shore and in the greater Topsfield, MA, area, contact our dental center to schedule a checkup and oral cancer screening.