Dental Modbury

Oral Cancer Screening – Isn’t that just for smokers?

Dental Modbury – Oral cancer is one of the most common types of cancer affecting adults in Australia. It can affect any of the soft tissues in the mouth, including lips, cheeks, and tongue.

An oral cancer screening provided by our dentists at Tea Tree Dental can detect the disease at an early stage when there is a greater chance of successful treatment and recovery.

What are the risk factors for oral cancer?

There is no single cause of oral cancer, but tobacco use is responsible for around 80% of cases. Importantly, other factors which increase your risk include:

  • Heavy alcohol consumption
  • Poor nutrition
  • Poor oral health and oral hygiene
  • Chewing your lips or cheeks
  • Sun exposure (for lip cancer)

Oral cancer gets more common with age and tends to affect more men than women, but it affects people of all ages.

Notably, a family history of oral cancer and health problems such as cold sores, human papillomavirus (HPV), Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and leukoplakia can also increase your risk of developing this disease.

“The Dental Modbury trusts”

What are the symptoms?

Some of the common signs that oral cancer may present include:

  • a lump or swelling around your mouth, lips, or throat
  • an ulcer or red or white patch in your mouth that does not heal
  • bleeding from your mouth
  • part of your mouth feels numb
  • sore throat or difficulty swallowing
  • difficulty chewing or moving your tongue or jaw
  • teeth feel loose
  • changes to speech or taste

If you spot any of these possible symptoms, you should see your dentist for oral cancer screening. Regular screenings improve the chance of mouth cancer being detected early, even before any symptoms present

Getting a diagnosis

Oral cancer screening is the first step in diagnosing possible mouth cancer. Screening is painless and only takes a few minutes. It can be completed by your dentist as part of your regular 6-monthly check-up.

If your dentist notices possible evidence of oral cancer, they will refer to a doctor who can provide a more thorough diagnosis.

Can oral cancer be treated?

Treatment for mouth cancer is more likely to be successful if it is caught early. Treatments depend on where the cancer is and how much it has developed.

For smaller cancers, a surgeon may be able to surgically remove the tumour and some surrounding tissues. Other cancers may require radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or a combination of both to destroy the cancerous cells.

Doctors will arrange regular check-ups to make sure cancer has not returned or to catch any new problems early.

See us at Tea Tree Dental

If you need a check-up or there is something odd you have noticed please contact our friendly team in Modbury – we are close to other centres: Clovercrest, Surrey Downs, Tea Tree Plaza, and Hope Valley.

Call us on 08 7226 3559, otherwise, feel free to book an appointment online

Contact Us

Modbury Dental Clinic

966 North East Road,
Modbury, SA, 5092

Phone: (08) 7226 3559