It is important to find oral cancer as early as possible when it can be treated more successfully. An oral cancer examination can detect early signs of cancer. Oral cancer exams are painless and quick and take only a few minutes. Your regular dental check-up is an excellent opportunity to have the exam. During the exam, your dentist or dental hygienist will check your face, neck, lips and entire mouth for possible signs of cancer. Make sure they check the sides of the tongue and where your tongue touches the floor of the mouth.
Some parts of the pharynx are not visible during an oral cancer exam. Talk to your dentist about whether a specialist should check your pharynx.
Oral cancer if not detected early can be deadly or disfiguring.
Possible Signs and Symptoms of Oral Cancer:
See a dentist or physician if any of the following symptoms lasts for more than 2 weeks.
- A sore, irritation, lump or thick patch in your mouth, lip, or throat
- A white or red patch in your mouth
- A feeling that something is caught in your throat
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing
- Difficulty moving your jaw or tongue
- Numbness in your tongue or other areas of your mouth
- Swelling of your jaw that causes dentures to fit poorly or become uncomfortable
- Pain in one ear without hearing loss
Together we fight oral cancer. Together we save a life every hour.