April is oral cancer awareness month, which means it’s time to draw attention to a type cancer that can be avoided, and treated if caught early enough. According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, there are nearly 50,000 cases of oral cancer diagnosed each year. What’s more, while other types of cancer are decreasing, oral cancer seems to have increased in frequency.
We are committed to helping draw awareness to oral cancer, and Whitmore Dental offer oral cancer screening as part of your check up. When caught early, oral cancer can be defeated. But to catch this disease early, Dr. Whitmore needs to see you in the office to examine your mouth and tongue. As part of your routine checkup, Dr. Whitmore will be searching for red or white spots, or small sores on the base of your tongue and inside of your cheeks.
When you keep your biannual appointment, you will be examined by Dr. Whitmore. However, if you notice any changes in your oral health, such as lumps or a sore that won’t go away, schedule an appointment as soon as you can.
Some people are more likely than others to be at risk for oral cancer. This includes people who:
- Use tobacco
- Drink alcohol
- Have a diet low in fruits and vegetables
- Have recurring infections, such as HPV
- Habitually chew on the inside of the cheek or tongue
More men than women are diagnosed with oral cancer every year, but risk factors tend to be linked closer to lifestyle than genetics.
Oral cancer screening is becoming a regular part of biannual checkups at most dental practices. And as it becomes more routine, how dentists screen and the technology used becomes better. This allows for faster detection, which allows for faster treatment, and saves lives.
While your dental cleaning is important, we want your whole mouth to be healthy. Oral cancer awareness is an important step in keeping all of our patients as healthy as possible.
If you are concerned about your oral cancer risks, contact Janet or Rachel at Whitmore Dental to arrange a consultation by calling Whitmore Dental at 877-779-4486. We are conveniently located at 5932 West Parker Road, Suite 600, Plano, TX 75093.