When we think of cancer, we often think of the types of cancer we hear about on a regular basis such as lung cancer or breast cancer. However, many patients overlook the fact that cancer can develop anywhere on the body, including in the mouth. This type of cancer is called oral cancer and can be just as deadly and concerning as cancer found elsewhere. However, with the help of a dentist and routine screenings, many patients can catch the early signs of oral cancer and significantly increase their chances of survival and recovery. At Arcadia Dental Arts in Phoenix, AZ, Dr. John Pappas and his team provide screenings and look for the obvious signs of oral cancer that a patient might overlook.
What is oral cancer?
Oral cancer is when cancerous cells develop somewhere in the mouth or around the mouth area, including the lips, tongue, and throat. This cancer is one of the few cancers that can be visually spotted and addressed in the earliest stages, which is what makes early detection critical. Oral cancer is the development of mutated DNA and the growth and multiplication of this DNA to cause the formation of a tumor or lump.
Is oral cancer serious?
Oral cancer is just as serious as any other type of cancer which is why it is vital that patients see their dentist regularly and undergo routine screenings to look for the early signs and indications that cancer may be present.
What should I look for?
If you notice any of the below issues within your smile, it is essential that you make a new appointment with Dr. John Pappas for an evaluation and screening:
- Lips experience sores or cuts and do not heal properly
- Loose teeth
- Visible red or white patches in the mouth or gums
- New lumps or growths in the oral cavity
- Difficulty swallowing or breathing due to a tumor blockage
- Any unusual changes in the smile
Don’t wait to have oral health concerns checked at your next recall appointment
Instead, call the dental office to make a separate appointment for an evaluation if you have a specific concern or new problem that arises. Dr. John Pappas and his team at Arcadia Dental Arts in Phoenix, AZ provide oral cancer screenings and other dental services to new and returning patients at his office. Call (602) 957-9643 to request a visit at 4124 North 40th Street.