April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month

April is Oral Cancer Awareness Month

Encouraging a widespread conversation on the importance of routine oral cancer screenings – not only in April, but every day!

Oral Cancer, when detected in an early stage, is oftentimes treatable and has a better prognosis. With nearly 50,000 people in the U.S. diagnosed with oral cancer each year, it is imperative that we check for abnormalities when patients are seen at Colony Square Dental Associates. You may have noticed during your hygiene examination that Drs. Hochberg & Diora will feel, see, & verbalize their oral cancer screening findings, or a lack thereof, as they perform your examination. Our goal is to raise your awareness, not only in the month of April, but all year round.

The American Dental Association (ADA) encourages both dentists and clinicians alike to provide their patients with a complete hard-tissue and soft-tissue examination. This includes inspecting lymph nodes, touching floor of mouth, palate, checking tongue, lips, and rear of throat. The dentist is looking for a number of signs including red or white patches, a lump, or a rough spot. The examination is completed when the doctor reviews your health history form and risk assessment.

As early detection and treatment is often the key to survival, periodic dental visits can improve the chances of identifying any suspicious changes. And, in between routine dental visits, it is equally important for patients to be aware of the signs and symptoms of oral cancer. If you notice a persistent sore, irritation, trouble chewing, swallowing, or moving your jaw or tongue that exceeds two weeks, it is time to call.  Dr. Hochberg or Dr. Diora will be able to determine if the area should be further examined or biopsied. Being vigilant, and working together as a team, our goal is not only maximize your dental health, but also to detect concerns that impact your overall health.

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