Look no further than Lindenwoods Dental for oral cancer screenings in Kalamazoo, MI. Nearly 42,000 Americans are diagnosed with oral and throat cancer every year. The key to survival is early detection. Oral cancer can also be known as: mouth cancer, throat cancer, tonsil cancer and tongue cancer. It can affect the lips, gums, tongue, the roof of your mouth, floor of your mouth, throat, tonsils, etc.
When making an appointment or when you arrive at your Kalamazoo dental clinic let them know you would like to be screened. You will be asked about you and your family’s health history. The exam will be of the oral cavity, head, and neck. The exam itself typically takes less than five minutes. During the screening, your doctor will go over signs and symptoms they are looking for and how you can look for them as well. If your dentist believes there is suspicion of cancer they will take a small biopsy and contact you with their findings in typically a week. If the biopsy is to come back positive surgery is typically the next step. Regular dental exams, every six months, will help aid in early detection.
Signs & Symptoms:
- Red or white lesions on mouth or lip
- Difficulty swallowing or chewing
- Sore, lump or pain that doesn’t go away
- Loose teeth – seems to be for no reason
- Difficulty moving your tongue or jaw
- Swelling and/or numbness in the mouth
- Combined use of Tobacco & Alcohol
- HPV 16 Positive
- Poor Diet
Get the Word Out!
Public awareness is one of the best ways to detect any type of cancer early. We are now custom to mammograms, pap tests and colonoscopies all because it has become known to the public how important screening and early detection is.
While over the age of 50 is where we typically see oral cancer, there have been increasing numbers in the recent years of people in their 20’s and 30’s. It is not known the exact cause of this but studies are starting to lean towards HPV 16 as the link in young adults and oral cancer. This means all ages should be having exams each time they visit the dentist. Make your screenings part of your six-month dental check-up every time with your Kalamazoo dentist, Dr. Lintner. You will be happy you did!