The ADA Emphasizes Early Detection

The American Dental Association has posted two pages on its website highlighting the importance of dentist visits as a method for the early detection of oral cancer.  The pages are broken up into a patient and dentist page featuring information that includes updated oral cancer statistics and for detecting and preventing oral cancer.  Key takeaways are:

  • Oral cancer strikes an estimated 34,360 Americans each year.  An estimated 7,550 people (5,180 men and 2,370 women) will die of these cancers in 2007
  • On average, only half of those diagnosed with the disease will survive more than five years.
  • The best way to prevent oral cancer is to avoid tobacco and alcohol use.
  • Regular dental check-ups, including an examination of the entire mouth, are essential in the early detection of cancerous and pre-cancerous conditions.
  • Understanding the signs of oral cancer is key to early detection.
  • Your dentist has the skills and tools to ensure that early signs of cancer and pre-cancerous conditions are identified.

As with any cancer, the key to surviving oral cancer is early detection.  Educating yourself on general awareness and scheduling regular checkups with your dentist are two essential responsibilities you have in the process.


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