Oral Cancer Screening in Irving, TX
Oral cancer is one of the deadliest cancers, due to how difficult it is to detect. Oropharyngeal cancer, the most common form of oral cancer, has a five-year survival rate of only 57%. This is much lower than the survival rate for breast cancer (93%) and testicular cancer (95%).
The early stages of oral cancer have very few symptoms, and most Americans do not have regular oral cancer screenings. This means the disease is often undetected until it spreads throughout the rest of the body.
This is why Dr. Nirav Patel offers oral cancer screenings for all patients at Dental Concepts in Irving. Regular oral cancer screenings can catch symptoms and abnormalities before it turns into something more serious, dramatically increasing survival rates.
The Oral Cancer Screening Process
Oral cancer screenings are non-invasive, simple, and can usually be conducted as a part of your routine check-up or teeth cleaning. During your oral cancer screening, Dr. Nirav Patel will examine your mouth for common signs of oral cancer, such as:
- Sore or irritated tissue
- Abnormal tissue discoloration
- Lumps and abnormalities
- Tissue that is abnormal in symmetry, appearance, or texture
Dr. Patel will also ask you if you have felt any strange symptoms in recent months, such as a sore throat, oral numbness, hoarseness of speech, or strange “lumps” in the throat. These can be indicators of different types of oral cancer like:
- Oropharyngeal cancer
- Lip cancer
- Squamous cell carcinoma
- Salivary gland cancers
- Verrucous carcinoma
It’s important to note that Dr. Patel cannot diagnose cases of oral cancer. If he notices common signs and symptoms that may indicate a problem, he will refer you to a specialist, who will perform a more intensive screening and evaluation.
Who Should Be Screened?
Oral cancer is very rare among individuals who are under 40 years old, and most patients develop oral cancer in their late 50s. Therefore, it’s recommended that all individuals over 40 years of age get regular oral cancer screenings.
This is especially important if you conform to known oral cancer risk factors like:
- Tobacco use of any kind (cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, snus and smokeless tobacco, pipes, chewing tobacco, etc.)
- Heavy use of alcohol, either in the past or ongoing
- Poor oral hygiene levels
- A weakened or compromised immune system
- High levels of sun exposure to the face and lips
- HPV (human papillomavirus) infection
If you conform to any of these risk factors, especially tobacco use, you should be screened regularly, even if you are under 40 years old. Tobacco is responsible for 85% of all head and neck cancers.
How Often Should I Get An Oral Cancer Screening?
You should get an oral cancer screening at least once a year, no matter your age, as per the recommendations of the ADA.
However, you may want to consider six-month screenings if you conform to multiple risk factors listed above, or are over the age of 50.
Getting regular oral cancer screenings has a variety of benefits. You can have peace of mind, knowing that you are cancer free. And even if abnormalities are detected, they can be treated early, ensuring much better overall health outcomes.
Visit Dr. Nirav Patel At Dental Concepts – And Get Screened Today!
Oral cancer is no laughing matter. It’s hard to detect and exceptionally dangerous. So don’t risk it. Schedule your oral cancer screening with Dr. Nirav Patel at Dental Concepts now. Dr. Patel can examine your mouth for irregularities, and help you determine if further action is needed.
Call now for an appointment at 972-869-2273, or visit our office at 7423 Las Colinas Blvd, STE 101, Irving, TX 75063.