Oral cancer screening is an examination performed by our dentists to look for signs of cancer or precancerous conditions in your mouth. The objective of oral cancer screening is to detect mouth cancer in its early stages, when there is a greater chance for a cure. The dental community is the first line of defense in early detection of the disease.
Oral cancer affects tens of thousands of Americans every year. At Fair Lawn Dental Associates, we use the most up-to-date technology to spot changes in oral tissue consistencies and/or lesions. A UV light is shined into the mouth to detect any unhealthy tissue. Healthy tissue looks lighter under the light while spots of bad tissue appear dark. With early detection, the cancer may be caught before it has time to spread, potentially saving lives.By the time symptoms appear, cancer may have begun to spread.
Science is trying to better understand which people are more likely to get certain types of cancer. They also study our daily activities and our environment to determine if they cause cancer. This information helps doctors recommend who should be screened for cancer, which screening tests should be used, and how often the tests should be done.
It is important to remember that your dentist or doctor does not necessarily think you have cancer if he or she suggests a screening test. Screening tests are given when you have no cancer symptoms.
If a screening test result is abnormal, you may need to have more tests done to find out if you have cancer. These are called diagnostic tests.
When it comes to oral cancer and saving lives, these are the primary responsibilities of the dental community. The most important step in reducing the death rate from oral cancer is early discovery. No group has a better opportunity to have an impact than members of the dental community.