Why Get Tested for Oral Cancer?

Oral cancer appears as a growth or sore in the mouth that does not go away. Oral cancer, which includes cancers of the lips, tongue, cheeks, floor of the mouth, hard and soft palate, sinuses, and throat, can be life-threatening if not diagnosed and treated early.

Risks and Symptoms of Oral Cancer

According the American Cancer Society, men face twice the risk of developing oral cancer as women, and men who are over age 50 face the greatest risk. Additional risk factors include:

  • Smoking
  • Smokeless tobacco users
  • Excessive consumption of alcohol
  • Family history of cancer
  • Excessive sun exposure
The most common symptoms of oral cancer include:
  • White and red patches in the mouth or lips
  • A sore or blister in your mouth that won’t heal
  • Difficulty swallowing, chewing, moving the jaw, speaking or moving the tongue.
  • Ear pain
  • Change in the way your teeth or dentures fit together
  • Unexplained bleeding from the mouth

How is Oral Cancer Diagnosed? Jordan Dentistry 3

Here at Jordan Dentistry, we use an instrument called the VELscope, which is a hand-held device that provides dentists and dental hygienists with an easy-to-integrate system for early detection of a wide variety of oral diseases, including pre-cancer and cancer. The VELScope provides Dr. Jordan with visual information that cannot be acquired by a standard soft tissue exam alone.

Routine VELscope examinations by your dentist can help detect signs of oral cancer early. Additionally, we advise patients to avoid tobacco use and drink alcohol in moderation, eat a well-balanced diet, and limit their exposure to the sun.

The American Cancer Society recommends oral cancer screening exams every three years for persons over age 20 and annually for those over age 40. We encourage you to contact our dental office in Cumming, GA to set up your appointment for an oral cancer screening.

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