Nearly 50,000 people are diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer each year. Dentists perform a critical service in the attempt to detect this cancer early through regular oral cancer screenings. Dr. McManus will perform a visual screening with every professional cleaning appointment.
During an oral cancer screening, Dr. McManus looks inside your mouth to check for red or white patches or sores throughout the mouth and on the tongue’s surface. This will also include feeling the tissues in the mouth to detect any lumps or other abnormalities in the tissues.
Risk Factors For Oral Cancer
The following are common risk factors for oral cancer but everyone should participate in regular oral cancer screenings for early detection:
- Tobacco use of any kind, including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco and snuff, among others
- Heavy alcohol use
- Previous oral cancer diagnosis
- History of significant sun exposure, which increases the risk of lip cancer