Have you ever wondered why your dentist recommends you come in every 6 months for your routine dental examinations? It’s because regular dental visits are essential for the maintenance of healthy teeth and gums but most vitally checking for mouth cancer. Mouth cancer refers to cancer occurring in any part of the mouth, tongue, lips and adjacent areas like the throat, salivary glands, pharynx, sinus and other sites in the head and neck area. Oral Cancer screening is a vital part of your routine examination, all the areas mentioned are thoroughly checked by our dentists here at Allenton Dental.
Here is Andrea’s story on why routine dental examinations are so important and how it saved her life!Three Years ago my dentist saved my life. I know this sounds a bit melodramatic but it’s no less than the truth. I went to the dentist for my normal 6month check up feeling absolutely fine. During the check up my Dentist noticed that the soft tissue on the right hand side at the bottom of my mouth was different from that on the left hand side and it hadn’t been 6 months previously. She explained that there could be several reasons for this but to be on the safe side she was going to refer me to the Head and Neck department at the Royal Derby Hospital. I was surprised, I hadn’t had any pain, my appetite was good and I had no reason to suspect anything was wrong. I was sent and appointment within a fortnight and a biopsy was taken. It proved that I did indeed have Cancer- an aggressive kind of cancer. Radical surgery and radiotherapy followed. Today, I am well and leading a full and active life – I still go to the dentist for my 6 monthly check up because, without that, I wouldn’t be here today – FACT! I will always be grateful to my dentist and urge everyone I know and meet to go to their dentist for regular checkups. Don’t wait until you have a problem you may have left it too late! Andrea
Every year nearly 8,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with Mouth cancer, the key to a better prognosis is early detection. Figures show that if mouth cancer is diagnosed early enough, a complete cure is possible with the correct treatment.
Signs to look out for –
- An ulcer or white/red patch in the mouth that does not heal within 3 weeks
- A lump or swelling anywhere in the mouth, jaw, or neck that persists more than 3 weeks
- A difficulty in swallowing, chewing or moving the jaw or tongue
- A numbness of the tongue or other area of the mouth
- A chronic sore throat or hoarseness that persists more than 6 weeks
If you are concerned in any way or would like advice on mouth cancer, do not hesitate to contact the practice on 01332 700244 where our team will be happy to help.
More information on Oral Cancer can be found on the mouth cancer foundation website.