Many assume their routine visits to the dentist are simply a box or two on a checklist of adult responsibilities. However, visiting the dentist office is a very important step towards achieving and maintaining good oral health which ultimately leads to better health overall. Making regular appointments allows dental hygienists and the dentist the opportunity to take preventative measures against potential diseases, including cancer. An oral cancer screening in TX is important and should be something everyone explores (even if it means adding another box to your checklist of responsibilities).
What is Oral Cancer?
Oral cancer is a disease that attacks the mouth. Included in the oral cavity region is everything associated with the mouth: lips, inside linings of cheeks, gums, tongue, teeth, as well as the bottom and the roof of the mouth. Since every part of the mouth varies in function, the cancer could potentially be a wide variety in both type and treatment. An oral cancer screening is crucial in preventing or detecting early signs of cancer in the mouth.
Oral Cancer Screening in TX
Many dentist offices extend oral cancer screenings as part of their routine appointments. Doing so makes every effort to maximize your visit. In Texas, for example, the screening can be included during or after your annual cleaning and x-rays. While everything seems to be bigger in Texas, it’s especially true when it comes to their stance on dental care and oral health. If a screening isn’t offered as part of a visit, one can be requested or an appointment can be made specifically with a screening in mind.
The oral cancer screening process should begin around the age of 18 and continued annually from there. It’s a non-invasive exam that is typically performed rather quickly. It consists of a hygienist or dentist examining the oral cavity for lesions or discoloration in tissue. If an area is determined to be particularly interesting, a biopsy may be necessary.
The Risk of Oral Cancer
Like most types of cancer, there isn’t a defined cause or path that leads to the diagnosis of oral cancer. However, there are certain habits and behaviors that could potentially increase the chances of developing cancer in the mouth, heavy smoking and drinking are among the most popular. An oral cancer screening in TX could help discover early signs should they appear.
If you’re in or around the Cypress area, the team at Spring Cypress Dental can handle all of your dental needs, including oral cancer screenings. Reach out to them to make an appointment and check it off your list in the process.