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Oral Cancer Screening in Manassas, VA
Everyone knows that going to the dentist every six months for routine checkups and professional cleanings is the best way to protect your oral and overall health for a lifetime. But did you also know that visiting the dentist can help you keep your mouth cancer-free? Before scheduling your next bi-annual appointment with Dr. Seto and the trusted team at Dentistree of Manassas, here’s what you should know about oral cancer screenings.
What is an Oral Cancer Screening?
Oral cancer refers to cancer that forms in your mouth or neck area. It can develop in many different places of your oral cavity, including on your gums, tongue, or the surrounding soft tissues of your mouth. At Dentistree of Manassas, Dr. Seto screens all of our new patients for mouth cancer during their initial appointment, as well as our returning patients during their routine dental exams. The oral cancer screening process is fast and painless.
Why Would a Dentist Recommend a Mouth Cancer Screening?
Oral cancer can often develop and worsen without you even realizing it. For this reason, it’s essential to have your mouth examined for the early signs of oral cancer at least every six months. If it’s been longer than six months since you’ve had a dental exam, your general dentist may recommend that you have an oral cancer screening. Oral cancer treatment is most effective when the cancer is caught in its early stages.
Oral Cancer Symptoms
While oral cancer can often form without you realizing it, it commonly causes symptoms that a dentist can easily recognize. The most common symptoms of mouth cancer include:
- Sores that won’t heal
- Oral pain or tenderness
- A lump
- White or red patches in the mouth
- Problems swallowing, chewing, or talking
What Happens During an Oral Cancer Exam?
Your oral cancer exam will take place during your 6-month dental checkup. Dr. Seto will carefully examine your tongue, gums, the inside of your cheeks for the warning signs of oral cancer, including sores, inflammation, and discoloration. He will also feel the inside of your mouth and neck for lumps. If he does notice any concerning symptoms, he may recommend that you monitor it for a few weeks or that you undergo a biopsy to determine if it is cancerous.
Oral Cancer Causes/Increased Risk Factors
Oral cancer can happen to anyone. While it can develop in people young and old with a variety of medical histories, certain factors could increase your chances of developing cancer, including:
- Using tobacco
- Drinking alcohol
- Extended sun exposure
- Family history
How Much Do Oral Cancer Screenings Cost?
Most dental insurance plans cover preventative dental treatments and exams, including oral cancer screenings. Please contact our office for information on what your dental insurance policy includes.
Oral Cancer Screening Dentist in Manassas, VA
Your oral health is worth caring for. At Dentistree of Manassas, we want to help make protecting your smile from oral cancer as convenient and straightforward as possible. Dr. Seto and his team are equipped with the best in progressive dental techniques, state-of-the-art equipment, and compassionate care to ensure that each of our patients receives unparalleled service. If it’s been a while since you’ve had a routine dental exam and professional cleaning, there’s no better time than now to prioritize your oral health. Contact us today to schedule your next appointment.
We look forward to keeping your smile healthy for years to come!