There’s a serious health issue the staff at Wildwood Dental would like to remind you of this month – Oral Cancer Awareness.
Every April, dentists all over the world are working to raise awareness of this illness, which is the sixth most common cancer. In fact, the Oral Cancer Foundation estimates that 43,000 Americans will be diagnosed with some form of oral cancer in 2014, resulting in approximately 8,000 deaths.
Scientists do not know the exact cause of oral cancer; however, research shows heavy use of tobacco products and alcohol consumption, HPV (human papilloma virus) and excessive sun exposure are linked to increasing the risk.
Because oral cancer is usually not diagnosed in its early stages, less than half of all oral cancer patients are cured. In fact, of all major cancers, oral cancer has the worst five-year survival rate at about 57%. If detected during the early stages, the survival rate jumps to 80% or more.
Your dentist can provide a simple exam for oral cancer and Wildwood Dental offers patients oral cancer screenings. During this exam, your dentist should feel for lumps or irregular tissues, changes in your neck, head, cheeks and oral cavity. He or she should also thoroughly examine the soft tissues in your mouth, looking for any sores or discolored tissues. If oral cancer is suspected, a biopsy will be ordered to confirm the diagnosis.
Early detection is key and regular dental check-ups can literally save your life. If you haven’t visited us recently, be sure to schedule an appointment today.
For more information on oral cancer screenings, call Wildwood Dental at 425-481-1889
Our Mill Creek dental office is proud to bring affordable, healthy smiles to all ages at our convenient location.