April is Oral Cancer Awareness month. This month we take the time to continue to educate patients on the severity of the disease and importance of preventative dental care for early diagnosis. Oral cancer rates continue to rise as the age of diagnosis is getting younger. Oral cancer is best treated when diagnosed as early as possible. Columbus, GA dentist Dr. Albert Caves uses state of the art dental technology to provide oral cancer screenings during all routine dental care visits.
VELscope for Oral Cancer Diagnosis
VELscope® technology is a blue fluorescent light used to examine soft tissues of the oral cavity. VELscope allows Dr. Caves to inspect your mouth and is non invasive and basically painless. VELscope helps to enhance Dr. Caves visual range while screening for oral cancer. The specially designed light allows for more accurate and earlier diagnosis. Early diagnosis can often be life saving. Survival rates of oral cancer patients drops dramatically with late stage diagnoses.
Signs To Watch For
Being aware of any changes in your oral health can also lead to early diagnosis of oral cancer or other complex oral health concerns. If you notice any changes in the soft tissues of your mouth or sudden changes in the alignment of your bite, be sure to contact Dr. Caves as soon as possible. Oral cancer often presents itself as an persisting open sore, red or white patch, thickening of the skin, or lump. If you have difficulty swallowing, chewing, or feel like you have a lump in your throat or hoarseness of your voice, these may be signs of oral cancer.
If you smoke, vape, or chew tobacco, drink alcohol excessively, or have been exposed to HPV your risk for developing oral cancer is greater. It is important for all patients, of all ages, to get screened for oral cancer during their biannual dental checkups. Preventive dental care is the best oral health care.
Schedule An Oral Cancer Screening
Preventive dental care plays an important role in maintaining lifelong dental health and in the prevention of overall health concerns such as oral cancer. Dr. Caves and his staff emphasize the benefits of disease prevention and take time to understand the personal health concerns of patients and educate them on how best to achieve and enjoy lasting oral health.