Oral Cancer Screening

Oral Cancer Screening in Easton, PA

At Tencza & Pugliese Dental, our staff is committed to providing our patients with the highest quality of care possible. Part of that commitment includes performing an oral cancer screening.

Oral cancer is a severe disease that can become deadly if not caught early. Therefore, we recommend that all our patients undergo oral cancer screening by a dentist at least once a year.

What is oral cancer?

Oral cancer affects the tissues in the mouth. It can occur in the lips, tongue, gums, and other areas of the mouth. It is often first detected during a routine oral examination by your dentist or other healthcare professional. Regular dental examinations typically allow for an early diagnosis and are the best defense against oral cancer.

Symptoms of Oral Cancer

If you develop oral cancer, these are some of the most common symptoms patients experience:

  • A sore throat or irritation in your mouth that does not go away within two weeks
  • Abnormalities or lumps in the mouth
  • Bleeding in the mouth and around your teeth
  • Pain in the mouth, jaw, or tongue
  • Difficulty swallowing or pain in the throat when swallowing
  • Changes in your voice

If you experience any of these severe symptoms, it is essential to schedule a visit to your dentist or other healthcare professional to get an oral cancer screening. Early detection is key to successfully treating oral cancer.

Who is at risk of developing cancer?

Oral cancer can develop in anyone, but certain risk factors increase your chances of developing the disease. Some of the most common risk factors include:

  • Tobacco use: Smoking cigarettes, cigars, or pipes and chewing tobacco increases your risk of developing cancer.
  • Heavy alcohol use: Drinking more than two alcoholic beverages a day can increase your risk of developing cancer.
  • Exposure to the sun: Spending time in the sun without proper protection increases your risk of developing cancer of the lips.
  • A history of oral cancer: If you have previously been diagnosed with oral cancer, you are more likely to develop the disease again.
  • Oral health problems: Oral health problems, such as gum disease and tooth decay, can increase your cancer risk.

If you have any of these risk factors, it is essential to talk to your dentist or dental hygienist about your risks and what you can do to reduce them.

Treatment Options if You Develop Oral Cancer

With the modern technology available today, doctors can ensure that treatment is successful most of the time. However, the treatment depends on several factors, such as the stage of cancer, the size of the tumor, and the patient’s overall health.

Treatment options include:

Surgery

Surgery is a standard option for oral cancer. It is used to remove cancerous tissue. The type of surgery performed will depend on the size and location of the tumor and the cancer stage.

In some cases, surgery could be the only thing necessary. However, it often requires a combination of treatments, such as surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy.

Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is a cancer treatment that uses drugs to kill cancerous cells. It can be given before or after surgery, or it may be the only treatment you receive. Chemotherapy for oral cancer is usually given in cycles, with each cycle consisting of a period of treatment followed by a rest period.

Radiation Therapy

Radiation therapy is a standard treatment for oral cancer. It uses high-energy waves to kill cancerous cells. When oral cancer is found at an early stage, radiation therapy may be the only treatment needed. Radiation therapy may be used with surgery or chemotherapy for more advanced oral cancers. 

Schedule Your Screening in Easton, PA Today!

If you want to learn more about Oral Cancer Screenings in Easton, PA, or if you want to make an appointment, please visit Tencza & Pugliese Dental today. We are accepting new patients and are happy to help you take care of your oral health.

Regular screenings are essential, especially if you are at high risk, so call us to set up your appointment today.