Tens of thousands of people are diagnosed with oral cancer each year, and it is becoming an increasingly more concerning problem for dentists and healthcare professionals. At Exceptional Dentistry, we want our patients to have excellent oral and overall health, and that includes checking for signs of oral cancer. During your visits to our office. Dr. James Powell will perfom a 2- to 3-minute oral cancer screening with VELscope® technology. VELscope uses blue light to make it easier for our dentist to locate any abnormalities in your mouth and throat. If any abnormalities are found, we can provide immediate treatment to help prevent additional and more harmful damage. We welcome you to call us at (661) 349-7725 to schedule your visit for your VELscope oral cancer screening in Palmdale, California.
Just like any other form of cancer, oral cancer is a dangerous and life-threatening condition; however, it is one of the most treatable cancers when it is caught early on. Oral cancer can affect several different parts of the body, including the lips, tongue, cheeks, bottom of the mouth, sinuses, throat, and the hard and soft palates. By performing regular oral cancer screenings during your visits to our practice, our dentist can help catch oral cancer early on and provide any necessary treatments to help prevent the cancer from becoming more advanced and harmful. To perform a more thorough and accurate oral cancer screening, our dentist uses VELscope technology.
The VELscope oral cancer screening system allows our dentist to use this device in combination with traditional screenings, or in place of them. Traditional oral cancer screenings involve examining the mouth and throat with the naked eye, or applying dyes to try and locate abnormalities. VELscope technology does away with those and provides a more comfortable and accurate treatment by using blue light.
Blue light is completely harmless, but it causes the natural tissues inside the mouth to appear fluorescent. Healthy tissue displays distinct patterns, while cancerous lesions or abnormalities soak up the blue light and appear as dark spots. This simple yet innovative technology produces highly accurate results and informs our dentist of any potentially harmful lesions that may require treatment.
In addition to receiving regular oral cancer screenings, it is important to know the symptoms of oral cancer. If you experience any of the following symptoms, we encourage you to contact our office and set up an appointment with our dentist as soon as possible:
- Persistently sore throat, or feeling like something is stuck in the throat
- Inexplicable oral bleeding
- Lasting sore on the face, mouth, or neck that bleeds easily and does not heal in a two-week period
- Inexplicable numbness or loss of feeling in mouth, face, or neck
- Ear pain
- Rough spots, lumps, or bumps on lips, gums, or other areas of the mouth
- White, red, or speckled areas in the mouth
- Difficulty chewing, swallowing, or speaking
- A change in how your dentures or bite fits together
To learn more about oral cancer, and to set up your next oral cancer screening, we invite you to contact our practice today.