An oral cancer screening can literally save your life. Even if your teeth and gums are healthy, it’s important to schedule regular comprehensive dental exams with Glen Dental in Glenview Illinois, to make sure that there is nothing abnormal about your gums, tongue, the roof of your mouth, your cheeks, or your lips.

According to the American Dental Association, oral cancer can occur inside or outside your oral cavity including your gums, teeth, cheeks, lips, throat, and tonsils at the base of the tongue and in the mid regions of your throat. Put them all together and oral cancer accounts for 2.9 percent of cancer in America. Early detection could be the answer, as one in nearly 10,000 people in the United States will lose their lives to oral cancer. Approximately sixty percent of people who have been diagnosed with oral cancer don’t make it past the five-year mark.

Oral Cancer Symptoms

If you notice any symptoms or signs, it is vital that you see Dr. Jeffrey Gilmor from the Glen Dental Center if they have not disappeared in 14 days.

Signs to look for include:

  • White or red patches
  • Sores and irritations that don’t go away
  • Numbness
  • Pain
  • Lumps
  • Rough spots
  • Problems chewing and swallowing
  • Problems speaking
  • Problems moving your jaw or tongue
  • Changes in your bite

Some people who have been diagnosed with oral cancer complain about feeling like they have something caught in the back of the throat while others notice a change in voice, hoarseness or a sore throat.

Oral Cancer Screening

During your exam, Dr. Gilmor will ask if you have noticed any chances in your mouth or if your medical history has changed. He will check your oral cavity including the roof and floor of your mouth, your gums, your lips, tongue, and your cheek lining. Dr. Gilmor will also examine your tonsils, your pharynx, and the back part of your tongue. Dr. Gilmor will also feel your neck and jaw for lumps, bumps, or abnormalities. If Dr. Gilmor notices anything suspicious, he may take a biopsy or give you a referral for further testing.

An oral cancer screening is important, and if you can’t remember the last time you had a comprehensive dental exam with an oral cancer screening, it is time to call the Glen Dental Center. It really can make a difference, call or click now.