Oral cancer is one of the most common cancers today and has one of the lowest survival rates, thousands of cases are reported each year. While people of all ages are at risk of cancer, adults over the age of 40, especially men, are the most susceptible. Additionally, people with many forms of cancer can develop complications as a result of their cancer treatment, some of them chronic and painful. These complications include dry mouth, overly sensitive teeth, as well as accelerated tooth decay. If oral cancer is not treated in time, it could spread to other facial and neck tissues, leading to disfigurement and pain. For this reason, our dentist, Dr. Harbin, gladly offers oral cancer screenings in Gaylord, Michigan. Please call Otsego Dental Group at (989) 448‑2664 and we will find an appointment time available for you to receive this life-saving procedure.
Oral cancer commonly develops on the tongue, but can also appear on the lips, gums, and soft palate tissues.
Symptoms of Oral Cancer
Early signs of cancer include lumps, lesions, and patchy areas—all of which may not cause discomfort of any kind. Other warning signs include:
- Lumps or growths in the neck or throat
- Difficulty swallowing
- Persistent sores in the mouth
- Unusual bleeding
Surgery may be the best option if a tumor is found in the mouth, face, or throat.
While our team will perform a screening for oral cancer to check for these and other symptoms, we encourage you to contact us if you notice any of these problems or if you experience any other type of dental pain. We are committed to helping you stay in good health.
You can take steps to prevent the development of oral cancer. Tobacco and alcohol use are the biggest culprits. Sun exposure and certain kinds of food have also been linked. A higher risk of oral cancer can be hereditary. Eating a diet rich in vegetables and fruit, maintaining good oral hygiene, and visiting the dentist regularly are highly recommended defenses against oral cancer.