The Oral Cancer Screening Process

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Visiting your dentist once every six months is mandatory for healthy teeth, but consider whether your dentist checks for oral cancer. Here at Periodontics of the Desert, Dr. Peter Warshawsky and his capable staff perform oral cancer screenings during your exam. Oral cancer is a serious disease. An average of 132 people in our country is diagnosed with it each day, and about 24 people die from it every day.

Tobacco and alcohol can dramatically increase your chances of contracting this disease. If you smoke or drink regularly, we encourage you to cut back or better yet, quit entirely. Oral sex can also increase your chances of getting a virus called HPV, which can lead to oral cancer. For others, the cause is unknown.

If we can catch your oral cancer in its early stages, you’ll have a 80-90% survival rate. That’s why it’s so helpful to have us check for oral cancer every six months.

How will the oral cancer screening go? First, we’ll have you take out any removable dental appliances in your mouth, such as dentures, retainers or partials. Then we will inspect your face, neck, lips and mouth for rough patches, lumps or sensitivity. We’ll ask you to stick out your tongue while we examine it for swelling and odd discolorations or textures on all sides of it.

If you are in need of a dental checkup in Palm Desert, California, you can give us a ring at 760-674-4410 to reach a member of our amazing dental staff. Feel free to ask us anything about our oral cancer screenings as you schedule your checkup today!