Oral cancer screenings are FREE at First Choice Dental.
Oral cancer is not something that just happens to tobacco users. This is why First Choice Dental provides oral cancer screenings for FREE to ANYONE over the age of 18. New patients receive this screening automatically. And all adult patients are screened annually. If you are not a patient but would like to take advantage of this free screening call any of our locations for an appointment. Mouth cancer is on the rise and we suggest an oral cancer screening once a year. Schedule yours today at any First Choice Dental location.
Why should I have an oral cancer screening?
Even if you do not smoke, you should ask your dentist about oral cancer screenings. According to the American Dental Association, more than 25% of mouth cancers occur in people who do not smoke and have no other risk factors. With oral cancer screenings, our dentists can help with early detection and greatly improve your chances of survival and successful treatment.
Mouth Cancer is curable when it’s caught early. When oral cancer screenings detect oral cancer at the earliest stage, treatment is quick, simple, less invasive, and more than 90% successful. This oral cancer screening exam is particularly important for dental patients with increased risk factors for oral cancer. Dr. Oz agrees. Check out this video.
VELscope: New Oral Cancer Screening Technology is Easy and Effective
The new VELscope system is a handheld device that uses the latest technology to assist dentists and hygienists in discovering cancerous or precancerous growths that may not be apparent to the naked eye. The scope uses a narrow band of safe, high-energy blue light and specialized filtering technology to help thoroughly evaluate the oral tissue for abnormal areas of concern, such as potentially cancerous lesions that may not be evident under white light. Its painless and adds only one or two minutes to your patient exam. If a potential lesion or suspicious spot or growth is discovered you will be asked to come back for a follow-up screening in two weeks. If there is no change, at that time you will be referred to an oral surgeon for further evaluation. The scope features a camera so we are able to provide pictures to the oral surgeon as well.
Mouth cancer is typically discovered in late stages, when the five-year survival rate is only 22%. However if detected in the early stages, treatment is usually less invasive and the five-year survival rate is 80% or higher. By detecting mouth cancer earlier, we will be providing you and all of our patients with the best health care currently available.
Many oral health care professionals including dentists at First Choice Dental now believe that all individuals over the age of 18 should have at least an annual comprehensive oral examination, and ideally as part of their dental hygiene visit. We are committed to your overall health and wellness and are proud to be working to raise awareness about oral cancer as well as to lead the way in promoting early detection. Please be sure to ask your dentist or hygienist about the new VELscope oral cancer screening.
Oral Cancer Risk Factors
- Tobacco use: either smoking or smokeless tobacco
- Exposure to the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV)
- Family history of cancer, especially oral cancer
Symptoms & Risks Associated with Oral Cancer
- Note: In the early stages, oral cancer can be present without any noticeable symptoms. Watch for the following symptoms or risks associated with oral cancer:
- A sore that does not heal
- A white or red patch of tissue
- Difficulty swallowing
- A lump or mass in the mouth or neck
- Hoarseness that lasts a long period
- Pain or numbness in the oral/facial region
- A change in voice
- Tobacco users including “smokeless” tobacco
- Heavy or chronic alcohol consumption
- Viral infections, particularly HPV 16/18
- Long term exposure to the sun (lip cancer)
- A history of oral leukophplakia or erythroplakia