Oral Cancer Screenings in Andover, MA

Every year approximately 10,000 people die from oral cancer. Fortunately, it is curable when found in its early stages, which many dentists can do. Oral cancer screenings are among the services that our dentists provide at Andover Cosmetic Dental Group because they know what to look for while examining or cleaning teeth.

What are the Signs of Oral Cancer?

The main signs of oral cancer that our dentists look for in Andover during an oral cancer screening are:

  • Red or white spots on the tongue, lips, or cheeks
  • Sores that bleed easily
  • Hardened areas or lumps inside the mouth
  • Thickened tissue
  • A crusted area in the mouth

Although it takes a biopsy to diagnosis cancer, spotting signs of it in the early stages can lead to curing it. It’s also important to learn the risk factors for this type of cancer.

Risk Factors for Oral Cancer

Men develop oral cancer at twice the rate women do, and men 50 and over who smoke and drink heavily have the highest risk of all. Also, people who have tested positive for HPV, the human papilloma virus, are more likely to get throat cancer that first develops at the base of the tongue and spreads to the tonsils.

Our dentists at Andover Cosmetic Dental Group are trained to look for oral and throat cancers when examining patients’ mouths or giving oral cancer screenings. Along with looking for signs and symptoms, they will also do a physical exam by feeling around the throat, neck, and head for lumps, thickening tissues, or the other signs of cancer.

What if Your Dentist Finds Something?

If one of our dentists in Andover spots a suspicious sore or lump, then they will refer you for testing. If you’re scheduled back to their office for a follow-up treatment within a couple of weeks, then they may wait to see you again and re-examine the spot or lump to see if it is still present before sending you to get it tested.

Oral cancer screenings are very important, and our dentists at Andover Cosmetic Dental Group are aware of how they can make a difference between life or death.

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