Oral cancer symptoms may not present as painful or be visible to the naked eye. Delaying dental check-ups for long periods and not having oral cancer screening increases the number of people with oral cancer detected in advanced stages.
Why is screening so important?
It is very important to screen for oral cancer so that it may be identified and treated early before the disease impacts overall health or becomes life-threatening..
Symptoms of oral cancer
Patients may request oral cancer screening of they have concerns over any symptoms. Oral cancer may manifest on any part of the mouth, including the tongue and lips as:
- a lump
- discoloured skin
- swollen neck lymph nodes
Signs include difficulties with swallowing, chewing and speaking.
Screening and diagnosis of oral cancer
During regular dental check-ups, dentists may ask patients if they experience such symptoms as part of the oral cancer screening process. Dentists conduct a physical examination of the mouth and where necessary may do a gum or tongue biopsy to see if any cancerous cells are present. Other diagnostic tests may include X-ray or CT scan.
Treating oral cancer
Once oral cancer is diagnosed, patients are provided with information specific to the type and stage of the cancer, and what treatments may be appropriate. The cancer may need to be surgically removed with or without radiation therapy. If you would like more information on oral cancer please contact City Dental in Leeds for more information.