In 2010, 37,000 people were diagnosed with oral cancer. This is a startling statistic. Even more startling is that a rapidly growing segment of patients affected by oral cancer are young, healthy non-smokers. It is believed that HPV is now the leading cause for oral cancer in American adults.
Routine visits to the dentist are very important for keeping your teeth and gums healthy, and give your dentist an opportunity to screen for oral cancer. At each patient exam, Dr. Jolanda Warren performs an oral cancer screening to check for the signs of oral cancer and abnormal cell formation.
Oral cancer has one of the highest survival rates (88%), when caught early. Unfortunately, most cases aren’t diagnosed until the disease is in advanced stages. Only about 1/3 of all oral cancer discoveries are caught early. When found late, oral cancer has a very low five year survival rate (32%).
Oral Cancer Symptoms
- Bleeding sores in the mouth
- Difficulty in chewing or swallowing
- Numbness of the tongue
- Ear pain
- Lumps or hard spots in the mouth
If you have any of these symptoms, you should make an appointment to see your dentist immediately.
Oral Cancer Detection
To screen for oral cancer, Dr. Warren will thoroughly examine inside your mouth, the roof of your gums and the back of your throat, as well as your tongue, the floor of your mouth, as well as the lymph nodes in your neck.