Oral cancer is scary and unsettling–but if it’s caught early on, it can be completely curable. Here at Triad Cosmetic Dentistry, we can now discover oral cancer at its earliest stages during your regular check-ups. The ViziLite Plus screening system helps our dentists detect any abnormalities before they’re visible.
Learn about oral cancer screenings and how our ViziLite Plus technology can benefit you.
What is an
Oral Cancer Screening?
An oral cancer screening is an exam performed by a dentist to look for signs of cancer or premalignant lesions in your mouth. The process is quick and painless, allowing our dentists to perform it in under five minutes during your routine visit.
Generally, patients should schedule a dental exam and check-up every six months to maintain good oral health. This allows our Triad dentists to perform an oral cancer screening at least once a year for preventative measures.
The Importance of Early Detection
The purpose of an oral cancer screening is to detect oral cancer at an early stage. The sooner it’s discovered and the sooner you begin treatment, the more likely rehabilitation is. A few considerable reasons to get an oral cancer screening are:
- It’s easy–one of our Triad dentists can check for signs during your regular exam
- It’s affordable–it’s performed during your routine check-up so there’s no additional cost
- It can save your life–the survival rate for oral cancer can increase when it’s detected and treated early on
Detecting Oral Cancer
With ViziLite Plus
Thanks to ViziLite Plus, our team is able to provide our patients with a comprehensive oral cancer screening in just a few minutes. It’s painless, efficient, and could help save your life.
Oral cancer screenings with ViziLite are completed in a few quick steps:
- To begin, we’ll have you rinse out your mouth with a cleaning solution.
- We’ll shine fluorescent light over your oral tissue to detect early signs of cancer, lesions, and other abnormalities. The special light makes normal healthy tissue appear dark and abnormal tissue look white.
- The last step is to dim the ViziLite and have one of our Triad dentists examine your mouth and the detected areas.
The Benefits of Getting a Screening
Discovering oral cancer early on can increase treatment success by more than 90 percent. Additional benefits you’ll receive by getting a screening with ViziLite Plus include:
- An easy, non-invasive screening
- Advanced knowledge and recommendations
- A quicker, more effective treatment process
- Reduced risk for future oral problems
Frequently Asked Questions
Symptoms of oral cancer can commonly be mistaken for other, less serious health conditions, such as a toothache or a mouth sore. If benign symptoms persist, you should contact Dr. MacDonald as soon as possible for an oral cancer screening.
Symptoms of oral cancer may include:
- A mouth sore that won’t heal
- Mouth pain that doesn’t go away
- A lump or thickening in the cheek
- A white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil, or lining of the mouth
- Difficulty swallowing or chewing
- A sore throat or a persistent feeling that something’s caught in your throat
- Pain in the teeth or jaw
- Voice changes
A dentist or doctor may find some cancers or pre-cancers of the mouth during a routine examination, but most oral cancers are detected after the patient experiences signs or symptoms. Diagnosing oral cancer may involve a physical exam, including a complete head and neck exam, biopsy, and imagining tests. Sometimes, blood tests and/or a dental exam are performed as well.
Ask About Your
ViziLite Exam Today
When you’re faced with any disease, it’s better to be safe than sorry. With our ViziLite Plus exam, you can feel confident you’ve received the most thorough oral cancer screening available.
If you want to learn more about ViziLite, contact our Archdale office at (336) 434-3186 or complete a contact form. Our team of experts is here to improve and maintain your oral health so you can live a fuller, healthier life.