Cancer may be present before symptoms begin. Routine screenings can help you catch oral cancer early, and increase the survival rate.
Even if you are not an elderly smoker, you may still be at risk for oral cancer. There's still much to be learned. Play it safe. Get screened today.
Oral cancer screenings are fast and free to get at your dentist in Erie, PA. Because of this simplicity, there's no reason not to get screened.
In its early stages, oral cancer patients rarely cite pain as a symptom. Instead, the first symptoms of oral cancer are flat patches of dead cells on the tongue, gums, mouth and cheeks. Canker sores that don’t heal are common. Look for sores that look like ulcers with white, gray, or yellow centers and red edges.
Yes. You can die from oral cancer. Oral cancer has a survival rate of only 50 percent five years after diagnosis, which is why it is important to catch it early. Early intervention and treatment can be the difference between life and death when it comes to this type of cancer.
When doing an oral cancer screening, a dentist will thoroughly examine a patient’s mouth for signs of oral cancer including discolored skin and gums, abnormal growths, ulcers, and sores. Most oral cancer screenings also involve an intensive line of questioning to help dental professionals determine if a patient is at low, moderate, or high risk of mouth cancer. X-rays are sometimes, though rarely, involved in an oral cancer screening.
While you should see a dentist every six months for a routine cleaning and check-up, dentists recommend that patients over the age of 20 should have regular screenings for oral cancer every three years. Patients over the age of 40 should be screened annually.
If you are/were a smoker, talk to your doctor about oral cancer screenings. Depending on how at risk you are, your dentist may recommend more frequent oral cancer screenings.
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