THE ORAL CANCER EXAM – What You Need To Know
As a follow up to our last post, we’ve outlined what you need to know about the Oral Cancer Exam at our dental office. An oral cancer exam is painless and quick-it takes only a few minutes. Your regular dental check-up is an excellent opportunity to have the exam. Here are a few things that you should know:
- Preparing for the exam: If you have dentures (Plates) or partials, you will be asked to remove them.
- Your health care provider will inspect your face, neck, lips and mouth to look for any signs of cancer.
- With both hands, he or she will fell the area under your jaw and the side of your neck,,checking for lumps that may suggest cancer.
- He or she will then look at and feel the insides of your lips and cheeks to check for possible signs of cancer, such as red and or white patches.
- Next,your provider will have you stick out your tongue so it can be checked for swelling or abnormal color or texture.
- Using gauze, he or she will then gently pull your tongue to one side, then the other, to check the base of your tongue. The underside of your tongue will also be checked.In addition, he or she will look at the roof and floor of your mouth, as well as the back of your throat.
- Finally, your provider will put one finger on the floor of your mouth and, with the other hand under your chin, gently press down to check for lumps or sensitivity.
The American Cancer society suggests that this exam be followed at every preventative oral hygiene appointment. If you have any questions or would like to schedule your next appointment, please call our office: 262-246-8810.