Everyone who comes to Belmont Family Dental for an exam also gets screened for oral cancer. The screening is an inspection of your mouth, jaw and neck.
The earlier you catch oral cancer, the easier it is to treat. That's why it's important to regularly visit Dr. Tinkle for updates on your oral health. In between visits, be aware of any symptoms that might be pointing to cancer.
These signs can include:
- sores or irritations that don't go away (even when you ask politely)
- red or white patches
- any part of your mouth or lips being tender, numb or in pain
- a lump, abnormally thick spot, rough area, eroded spot or crust
- difficulty swallowing, talking, chewing or moving your jaw or tongue
- a change in the way your teeth are set when your mouth is closed
A few of the most common factors that contribute to mouth and throat cancers are smoking, excessive drinking and the human papilloma virus (HPV).
If you are unfortunate enough to have oral cancer and are being treated for it, look in your mouth every day to see if anything unusual appears - sores, tiny gnomes or other changes to scenery. Contact Dr. Tinkle or your doctor if you see or feel anything out of the ordinary.