Everything You Should Know About Oral Cancer Screenings

Everything You Should Know About Oral Cancer Screenings

May 16, 2019

Every year, many new cases of oral cancer are reported. Early identification can have a significant impact on survival but if it is recognized before it spreads.

Oral cancer screenings can give patients and doctors to start with treatment. Therefore, patients can have better results and longer lives.

What Is an Oral Cancer Screening?

Cancer screenings mean looking for cancer before any symptoms appear. This helps in identifying cancer at its early stage. Early identification can improve the chances of survival, treatable, and minimize unpleasant side-effects.

What Are the Oral Cancer Screening Guidelines?

Screenings help in detecting cancer at early stages and can be easily treated. Guideline for screening-

  • Clinicians need to perform extraoral and intraoral conventional visual and tactile examinations in adult patients.
  • If suspicious lesions are found, a biopsy is performed immediately or the patient is referred to a specialist.

Screening of oral cancer is beneficial for anyone, it is important for people with certain risk factors.

  • Use of any kind of tobacco including cigars, cigarettes, pipes, snuff and chewing tobacco
  • Any type of previous oral cancer diagnosis
  • A history of intense sun exposure, which can increase the chances of lip cancer
  • Intake of alcohol regularly also increases the risk of oral cancer

How is Oral Cancer Screening Done?

Oral cancer screenings do not require any special preparation and are performed during regular dental appointments. The dentist will look into your mouth for soreness and white or red patches of tissue. They will also check oral tissue to look for lumps or any other abnormalities.

In certain cases, it is recommended rinsing your mouth with a special blue dye before screening to differentiate healthy cells from abnormalities.

How Long Can Oral Cancer Go Undetected?

Oral cancers can take years to develop in a few cases. Early identification helps in improving survival and reduces treatment-related issues.

Screening helps in ensuring that oral cancer is not developing. It gives peace of mind to the people who have specific risk factors that make them susceptible to oral cancers.

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