Mouth Cancer Exams: Screening for Oral Cancer at Our Dental Office Saves Lives

Have you been screened for oral cancer this year? Routine oral cancer screenings can be life-saving. This simple yet powerful procedure detects oral cancer in its early stages when it’s easily treatable.

If you are overdue for a mouth cancer exam, schedule an appointment today with Dental Associates of Hoboken. Your oral cancer exam takes about 5-10 minutes, but it can save a life. What are you waiting for?

What are the symptoms of oral cancer?

Oral cancer can develop anywhere in the mouth, including the lips, palate, tongue, cheeks, jaw, gums, etc. While the following symptoms may not indicate mouth cancer, it’s still good to schedule an appointment with your doctor to be safe.

The common signs of mouth cancer include.

  • Red or white patches
  • A mouth sore that doesn’t heal
  • Difficulty swallowing 
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Abnormal lumps in your neck, throat, and other oral structures
  • Pain inside the mouth

What should I expect during an oral cancer screening?

One reason many oral cancer cases go undetected is that many cancer types are asymptomatic or seem innocuous. For instance, red patches in the mouth can easily be brushed away as a cold sore. Routine oral cancer screenings detect even minute changes in your smile before you spot or experience the symptoms.

Oral cancer screenings are quick and painless. They are also performed during your regular dental exam, so you don’t need to schedule a separate appointment. During a cancer exam, we visually inspect your gums, tongue, palate, cheeks, and other structures to spot abnormal sores, patches, etc., that may be cancerous. We also use gloved hands to feel for bumps, lumps, and other unusual masses in your neck, jaws, throat, etc.

Drs. Posner, Ali and Brezillion  use their deep knowledge of oral pathology to observe any changes in the mouth, however subtle. Should we detect unusual signs, we may order further tests using special lights and dyes. If needed, we’ll suggest a biopsy to confirm or rule out the presence of cancer.

Who needs oral cancer screening?

Like most cancers, everyone is at risk of oral cancer, regardless of age. However, certain people are at a higher risk of developing this life-threatening disease. At the top of this list are persons who use tobacco products, may it be through smoking, chewing, or vaping. To put this in perspective, patients who use tobacco products are 5-10 times more likely to develop mouth cancer!

Other factors that may put specific populations at a high risk of mouth cancer include.

  • Heavy alcohol use
  • Exposure to human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Excessive sunlight exposure
  • A family history of cancer

While certain individuals are at a higher risk of mouth cancer, everyone should be screened routinely. Mouth cancer can affect people of all ages, races, genders, and backgrounds. Routine cancer screenings detect the condition early enough before it advances and spreads to other body parts.

Where can I be scanned for mouth cancer in Hoboken, New Jersey?

By prioritizing mouth cancer exams, you can make significant strides in fighting this disease and potentially save your life. Call (201) 795-2111 today to book your oural cancer exam with Dental Associates of Hoboken.