What Is Oral Cancer?

Oral cancer, which can also be known as mouth cancer, is a form of the disease whereby a tumour develops in an area of the mouth.
It is typically on the surface of the tongue, inside the cheeks, the lips or gum or roof of the mouth.
In less common cases, tumours can also develop in the saliva-producing glands, the tonsils or the pharynx (part of the throat).

The Importance Of Seeing Your Dentist

That everyone should have a dental check-up at least once every year is a well-established guideline instilled in us as children, but why?

Routine check-ups not only help to spot and treat signs of decay, plaque build-up and early onset gum disease, but your dentist is also the professional perfectly placed to identify early signs of oral cancer.

Every dental examination commences with an extra-oral and intra-oral examination, evaluated in conjunction with your medical history and lifestyle, to determine whether you are at risk of mouth cancer.

Our practice is one of the few practices in the UK that use the VELscope system to see oral mucosal abnormalities that might otherwise have been overlooked.

This is a wireless, handheld scope that uses natural tissue fluorescence visualisation which takes just a few minutes to use and is non-invasive.
These appointments are also a chance for the patient to raise any concerns they may have such as a lump, persistent pain or any other symptom that might suggest a health concern.
A dentist may not be able to prevent someone from suffering from cancer, but they can spot concerns early on and make the immediate appropriate referral.
The World Journal of Surgical Oncology has produced research that starkly sets out the importance of early diagnosis.

In Perspective

Focussing on a specific form of cancer can lead to concerns, but it should be pointed out that a standard ulcer or sore in the mouth is not always reason to panic.

Consider conducting frequent Self Checks as guided here.

However, if you are ever in doubt, please don’t hesitate to contact us and arrange an appointment.

More Information:

Do you have a specific question?

If you have any concerns over your oral health, please get in touch with us today.