What your dentist is doing during your check-up without you noticing
Did you know during your regular dental check-up that your dentist is also checking for signs of oral cancer?
Last month was Oral Cancer Awareness Month, for those of you who missed the memo we encourage you to consider the importance of having your mouth assessed for oral cancer as soon as possible. Our dentists at City Smiles in Melbourne CBD spend time during each regular dental check-up to assess 10 key places in and around the mouth which can help determine whether or not you have any signs of oral cancer. This assessment is quick, painless and looks for any irregularities, lumps or tissue changes.
Oral cancer doesn’t just target unhealthy mouths
Smoking and chewing tobacco products, while increasing the risk of oral cancer, are not the sole cause of this disease. Anyone, at any age can be diagnosed with oral cancer, even those who take care of their mouths and live a healthy lifestyle can get oral cancer. In the early stages of oral cancer the symptoms can go unnoticed because it may manifest as a mouth ulcer. This is why it is so important to seek dental care on a regular basis, a small unnoticed ulcer or irritated tissue could be oral cancer in its early stages.
Other known causes of oral cancer
Recent studies have linked the sexually transmitted disease known as the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV-16) as a growing cause of oral cancer. The link between the HPV virus and oral cancer helps to explain why there is an increasing incidence of young, non-smoking oral cancer patients. Another more obvious cause of this cancer is extended exposure to the sun. Sun damage is not a new concern with its relationship tied closely to skin cancer also. In a sunny country that spends most of the time outdoors we encourage Australians (especially those that work outside) to have their mouths checked for oral cancer regularly- what may feel like a small sun burn or chap lip may actually be a sign of oral cancer.
Your check-up at City Smiles
At City Smiles in Melbourne we offer oral cancer check-ups for every patient during their regular check-up with no additional charge. While other cancers like breast and skin are widely publicised, oral cancer check-ups needs to be made a priority also.
Your general check-up at City Smiles will also include a cleaning to ensure plaque and tartar is removed and your teeth are cleaned and maintained.