Oral cancer is a dangerous, and surprisingly common, type of cancer that kills one American every hour. Oral cancer is very treatable, but early detection is key. In fact, when caught early, the survival rate is almost 90 percent. However, if the cancer spreads before diagnosis, a patient only has a 60% chance of surviving after 5 years.
Meyerland dentist Dr. Heather Fleschler includes a detailed oral cancer screening as part of your regular dental checkup, which is just another reason to maintain a twice-yearly schedule of dental cleanings. In addition to the regular oral cancer screenings that come standard with every exam, be on the lookout for such warning signs as:
- Sores that bleed easily or do not heal
- Color changes within the mouth
- Thick, rough spots
- Crusted or eroded areas
- Pain, numbness, or tenderness in the mouth or on the lips
As always, prevention is the best medication. The risk of developing oral cancer increases in those who use tobacco, drink heavily, habitually bite their cheeks or lips, or receive constant sunlight exposure. All patients should receive regular dental checkups and cleanings, but it’s especially important for those at higher risk.
To schedule your next checkup and oral cancer screening, please contact Dr. Heather Fleschler using the form at the right side of the page or call (713) 660-6500 today. We serve patients in the Houston, Texas areas of Meyerland, River Oaks, West University and Bellaire.