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Posts Tagged ‘oral cancer’

Preventing Oral Cancer

In Dental Care on March 10, 2011 at 4:30 AM

A simple and painless test performed annually during our regular dental check-up can help identify potential warning signs of oral cancer. We can also limit our exposure to certain risk factors we now know are associated with oral cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, many types of abnormal cells can develop in the oral cavity in the form of red or white spots. Some are harmless and benign, some are cancerous and others are pre-cancerous, meaning they can develop into cancer if not detected early and removed.

The Oral Cancer Foundation goes on to suggest a little self-examination can go a long way in between dental visits. On their website here, you’ll notice we are the most important factor in an early diagnosis. Here are some warning signs from the OCF:

  • A sore or lesion in the mouth that does not heal within two weeks.
  • A lump or thickening in the cheek.
  • A white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of the mouth.
  • A sore throat or a feeling that something is caught in the throat.
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing.
  • Difficulty moving the jaw or tongue.
  • Numbness of the tongue or other area of the mouth.
  • Swelling of the jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable.

The American Cancer Society provides a complete guide to oral cancer here, some prevention tips include:

  • Limiting tobacco and alcohol usage
  • Limiting exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light
  • Wearing properly fitted dentures
  • Eating a healthy diet
  • Avoiding HPV infection

Be sure to ask your dentist about an oral cancer screening on your next scheduled check-up.

What’s Your Score?

In Dental Products on November 4, 2010 at 4:00 AM

We know, your last visit was less than 6 months ago…but haven’t you ever wondered how to gauge your risk for gum disease, oral cancer, or other restorative risks and needs between appointments?

Ok, we know – that’s why you so diligently keep those regular 6 month visits! And we appreciate your continued commitment to optimum overall health and wellness.

But when you have some time to browse around, be sure the check out this cool little tool –

According to, myDentalScore generates scores for gum disease risk and severity, oral cancer risk, and restorative risk and needs based on answers to a simple health questionnaire. Reports graphically display the numeric scores and provide valuable systemic health information related to oral health status.

Let us know if you think something like this might be a good tool for our practice website. We’re constantly looking for ways to better educate the surrounding community about the latest in dentistry and health care, but we also want to learn how we can serve you – our patients – better.

Be on the lookout for a quickie poll over the next few days, we’re going to be asking you what you look for most when choosing a dentist. Enquiring minds want to know!

Do You Need an Oral Cancer Screening?

In Dental Care on September 14, 2010 at 3:00 AM

In short – yes! Usually screenings are a simple, but important part of your regular six month office visits.

Actor Michael Douglas recently publicly acknowledged his plight with stage IV oropharyngeal cancer. This public attention has gone on to highlight some recent information suggesting an increase in oral cancer occurrences[1].  And while tobacco use has historically been linked to oral cancer as the primary cause, new information suggests HPV could also be responsible for the increase in oral cancer reporting[2].

If you have kids, or plan on having kids, this is important information to you.

If you don’t have kids and never plan to, this is still important information to you.

If you don’t know anybody that smokes or uses chewing tobacco, and doesn’t even want to think about having kids – share the info anyway, it’s important to you and everyone you know. It’s important to all of us.

Pay attention to your body, treat yourself right – and communicate with your family physicians, dentists, internists, podiatrists, soothsayers…whatever. Educate yourself, and speak up if you have any questions.

Sermon over.

If you have any questions about an oral cancer screening, please open up and say ahhhh!!!


[2] For more scientific info and Oral Cancer Screening Tips, click here: