Oral Cancer Screenings - Torrance
Preventive Care to Reduce the Risk
Unfortunately, oral cancer is a real risk for every dental patient. That’s why your dentist in Torrance believes it’s so important to offer oral cancer screenings with every preventive appointment. Screenings are one of the best ways to detect the symptoms of oral cancer. Without them, patients may not notice symptoms until the disease is quite advanced, affecting their chance of survival.
The Symptoms of Oral Cancer
Oral cancer is difficult to detect alone because many of the symptoms seem trivial, like something you can ignore. Or, they resemble other dental issues, leading many patients to an incorrect self-diagnosis. If you’re not trained in the inner and outer workings of the mouth, you should always trust a dentist to review your oral health through and through.
Your dentists at Blue Coast Dental Group, Dr. Peter Refela and Dr. Sanaz Hamzehpour, are experts at spotting issues that deal with the head, neck, and mouth—including symptoms of oral cancer. Typically, they will look for signs of the disease with a thorough exam.
If you feel any of these symptoms, you should ask your dentist for a thorough oral cancer screening:
- Mouth sores that will not heal
- Consistent dental pain
- Lumps on your cheek
- White or red patches on your gums
- Numbness in your mouth
- Loose teeth
- A sore throat that lasts for weeks
- Difficulty swallowing or chewing
- Difficulty moving your tongue or jaw
- Change in voice
- Weight loss
- Chronic bad breath
What to Expect During an Oral Cancer Screening
If you’ve never received an oral cancer screening, you may be wondering what a screening truly entails. The process is simple, only taking a few minutes to complete.
Either one of our dentists will meticulously review the oral tissues in your mouth, head, and neck area for signs of oral cancer. Typically, early signs can be spotted as abnormalities on or around the tongue, swollen lymph nodes, or open sores that don’t heal normally.
If there are any abnormalities noticed, your dentist will complete a biopsy right away. Even if no cancer is found, our dentists will still discuss habits to prevent oral cancer, like quitting smoking and avoiding alcohol abuse. It’s also critical to attend your dental appointments every six months so you receive regular oral cancer screenings in Torrance.
It’s important to stay two steps ahead of potential health problems, especially when it comes to deadly diseases. When oral cancer is detected in its preliminary stages, the survival rate is about 80-90%! In contrast, many patients that are diagnosed during the more advanced stages only survive an additional five years.
The choice is ultimately yours. If you want to stay proactive by practicing excellent preventive care—including getting necessary oral cancer screenings—feel free to call us today and schedule your next appointment. Visiting our Torrance office could be the difference between survival and a life-defining disease!