Cancer of any kind is a scary thought. However, one of the keys to successful cancer treatment lies in discovering the condition early. Oral cancer screenings can occur right in your dentist’s office during your regular examination and cleaning. Learn more about oral cancer screenings with your dentist at Hilton Head Dental in Hilton Head Island, SC.
The Importance of Oral Cancer Screenings
Most cancers are most easily treatable and curable in their early stages. Additionally, finding cancer before it spreads is crucial in the treatment process. About 1 American dies every hour from oral cancer, but early detection has a very high rate of curability. You can get an oral cancer screening in your dentist’s office during your normal dental examination and cleaning. The process is quick and easy and yields immediate results.
Who should get an oral cancer screening?
Some people are more at risk for oral cancer than others, particularly smokeless tobacco users. According to the American Cancer Society, patients who are over the age of 40 and are at average risk for oral cancer should undergo a screening at least once a year. However, patients who use tobacco or alcohol or who have immune disorders like HPV or HIV, and those who have a family history of cancer should have more frequent screenings.
Oral Cancer Screenings in Hilton Head Island, SC
Your dentist will perform an examination of your mouth to look for lesions, white or red patches inside of the mouth and other physical abnormalities. Your doctor may use staining techniques which use special dye. The dye appears a different color when it touches abnormal cells, showing your doctor where you could have cancer cells. Other methods include scraping cells from the oral tissues with a tool or a brush and viewing them under a microscope to look for irregularities which could be a sign of cancer.
For more information on oral cancer screenings in the Hilton Head Island, SC area, please contact Dr. Julie Camp-Tome, Dr. M. Glenn Barker and Dr. Benjamin Thomas Wietecha at Hilton Head Dental in Hilton Head Island, SC. Call (843) 681-9666 to schedule your appointment today!