How an Oral Cancer Screening Can Save Your Smile
Oral Cancer can be hard to predict, but there are a number of factors that can increase your risk. Preventive dental care and oral cancer screenings are your first line of defense against oral cancer. Our dentist Dr. Steven Rattner and the dental team at Grove Dental Arts offer cosmetic, general, and emergency dental services in Gaithersburg, MD.
Oral Cancer Screenings in Gaithersburg, MD
Most people know that regular dental exams and cleanings are necessary to protect your teeth and gums from tooth decay and gum disease. But in addition to looking for periodontal problems, dentists also check for signs of oral cancer on your gums, tongue, and within the oral cavity that you might otherwise miss or mistake for common problems like a canker sore.
Some of the most common signs and symptoms of oral cancer include:
- Sores that don't seem to heal
- Red or white patches on the tongue, gums, or inside of your cheeks
- Unexplained pain or numbness in your mouth/lips
- Trouble chewing or swallowing your food
- Changes to your bite pattern
The best way to catch oral cancer early and prevent it from growing is to go for regular dental check-ups. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends that most people schedule a check-up and professional dental cleaning at least once a year, but some people may need to go more frequently.
In addition to preventive dental care and regular oral cancer screenings, avoiding tobacco and limiting your alcohol consumption can help to lower your risk for oral cancer and other health problems.
Find a Dentist in Gaithersburg, MD
For more information about your oral cancer risk and to schedule a dental exam and oral cancer screening, contact Grove Dental Arts today by calling (301) 987-5527 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Rattner.