FAQs About Oral Cancer Prevention and Screenings

Oral Cancer Screening Fresno, CA

Oral cancer is a major concern for many branches of the medical field, including dentistry. According to The Oral Cancer Foundation, around 53,000 people will likely be diagnosed with this type of cancer within the next year. Because of its higher mortality rate than many other types of cancer, early detection and prevention are essential for fighting the destruction it causes. Patients often have many questions about oral cancer, and providing the most up-to-date information and educating patients on prevention is an important job for dentists and dental hygienists. 

Common questions about oral cancer

Patients' common concerns about oral cancer include who is at highest risk and how it can be detected. 

Who is at risk of getting oral cancer?

Risk factors for oral cancer include any type of frequent tobacco use. While smoking more often causes throat cancer, it can be a risk factor for oral cancer as well. Smokeless tobacco that is chewed or held in the mouth causes tissue changes over time. This can lead to a growth of cancerous cells that can divide rapidly. 

While many people are aware of the link between oral cancer and tobacco use, not as many know about the rise in oral cancer due to human papillomavirus. High-risk behaviors related to this type of oral cancer include unprotected sex or having multiple sexual partners. Dentists and other health professionals are obligated to explain all risk factors to patients and offer any guidance or counseling on stopping high-risk behaviors.

How often is a screening needed?

Many oral cancers are detected in later stages when treatment is more difficult. Early cases are more easily treated and have a better overall prognosis. Therefore, it is essential that patients visit a dentist at regular intervals and that the dentist performs a routine screening at every visit. The typical patient should see a dentist twice a year for a full exam; this often includes routine cleaning and X-rays as well.

How does a dentist check for oral cancer?

Visual examination and digital palpation are the most common ways that dentists look for cancer. The dentist may ask a patient to touch the tip of the tongue to the roof of the mouth to examine the tongue base. The dentist will also check the sides of the tongue, throat, lips and gums. Any unusual lesions, such as white or red patches or sores, may be biopsied and sent for laboratory results. It is important to note that not all suspicious areas are cancerous, but it is important to have any checked as soon as possible.


Oral cancer is a fairly prevalent disease that can be managed more effectively when detected early in the process. All medical professionals, especially dentists, should educate patients on risky behaviors that increase the chance of oral cancer. When patients are aware of all the facts, they can better make decisions about lifestyle choices and preventive measures.  

Request an appointment here: https://www.professionaldentalcare.net or call Professional Dental Care at (559) 467-1234 for an appointment in our Fresno office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Oral Cancer Screening in Fresno, CA.

Recent Posts

What Happens During An Oral Cancer Screening?

It is important to get an oral cancer screening regularly. This is a physical and visual examination of your mouth and the nearby tissues. The goal is to check for issues or signs that might indicate cancer. With a screening, you can have the reassurance that there are no issues that show oral cancer. Keep…

Treatment Of Oral Cancer

Like any other type of cancer, oral cancer is easier to beat when caught early, which makes your bi-annual routine dental checkups an early warning system. Most dentists perform screening for oral cancer during these checkups. They take the time to check that all surfaces of their patients’ mouths are clear of any unusual growths,…

A Healthy Diet Is Important For Oral Cancer Prevention

A healthy diet goes a long way when it comes to oral cancer prevention. Oral cancer is caused by a variety of things like tobacco and alcohol use or an HPV infection. A major step anyone can take towards preventing oral cancer is stopping any use of tobacco products and limiting their intake of alcohol.…

Do I Really Need An Oral Cancer Screening In Fresno?

We can provide you with an oral cancer screening in Fresno, a simple step that could help to save your life.  While oral cancer is something that most people do not think about, it is all too common.  In fact, according to the Oral Cancer Foundation, one person dies in the United States every hour…

Recent Posts

Three Ways Your Dentist Can Use Botox

Three Ways Your Dentist Can Use Botox

Botox® is becoming increasingly common in the use of various dentist-related issues, including TMJ, cosmetic concerns, and adjusting to new life with dentures. Botox treatment involves injections in the lip, jaw, or surrounding areas of the mouth to address specific cosmetic, function, or oral health concerns. If you are not happy with the appearance of your…

How To Clean Your Teeth When You Have Invisible Braces

How To Clean Your Teeth When You Have Invisible Braces

Getting invisible braces off can be exciting because you have spent months working on it. But if you discovered that the teeth were straight but had decay, you might be disappointed. The good news is that you can care for your teeth properly to avoid any decay. That can give you a beautiful smile at…