What is mouth cancer and what should I do to protect myself and my family?

We all know that you go to your dentist for a root canal or even for aesthetic treatments such as Botox. However, what you might not know is you can go to your dentist for mouth cancer screening.

Mouth cancer covers a range of cancers in the mouth, neck and nasal passages. There are several types of cancers that can arise, however the most common is squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), which occurs in the surface cells of the skin.

Mouth Cancer Screening in GlasgowSymptoms vary and could be as simple as a mouth ulcer that hasn’t healed, lumps and swellings in the neck or mouth or tingling in the lips or tongue. Of course, these could be symptoms of a range of other things, including a common cold, so it’s important to go to your dentist to have a mouth cancer screening appointment.

Here at The Scottish Centre for Excellence in Dentistry, we offer mouth cancer screening in Glasgow as a yearly routine service.

What will happen at my mouth cancer screening?

During your screening, we will look thoroughly around your neck, throat and under your tongue, we’ll also use a handheld screening device. It’s not very different from a normal check-up and completely painless.

If we did find any abnormalities, we will then treat you and monitor your progress or we’ll refer you for further treatment.

When should I have a screening?

You should have a yearly screening and can be booked in with any of our dentists at our Glasgow clinic. We are open Monday to Friday, 8.45am till 5.30pm, so we can offer you a range of times and appointments to ensure you are seen quickly.

If I’m worried about anything what should I do?

If you have noticed anything abnormal, we are here to help. Just book in an appointment for you or your family member and we can get you checked out.

We here to support and we take you and your family’s oral health seriously. Our dental hygienists, dentists and dental surgeons can offer you great responsive care, no matter what issue you are facing. Get in touch today for greater peace of mind.

Screening ensures your oral health is maintained

According to the Mouth Cancer Foundation, there were over 11,000 new cases of mouth cancer in the UK in 2014; 4,000 were terminal. Cases are on the increase and in part Cancer Research UK puts this down to late detection. It’s now more important than ever to take screening seriously and if the figures show anything, finding out early is the key to successful treatment.

Mouth Cancer Screening in GlasgowYour dentist is in an excellent position to screen you for mouth cancer and although cancer needs to be taken seriously, it doesn’t mean that it has to be a frightening issue. If anything, with the support of your dentist, it can be as simple as being part of your yearly oral health check-up.

At The Scottish Centre for Excellence in Dentistry, we offer a great screening service for all our patients. It’s a straightforward appointment with a full check of your head, neck and mouth area, followed by an examination inside your mouth using a handheld scanning device. This will highlight anything that looks different or needs more thorough investigation, either fully diagnosing and treating, or we will refer you on for further treatment.

Don’t let fear stop you

In Glasgow, mouth cancer screening is painless, quick and easy to do. Much like having tests for cervical or prostate cancer, building yearly check-ups into your health routine is important. It ensures that if there are any abnormal cells, they are caught in their early stages and treated effectively. If you have any lumps or ulcers in your mouth that have been persistent, do also have them checked with us.

Smoking, drinking and diet are also contributing factors to your oral health and have direct links to cancer, so we will encourage you to give up or at least reduce your habit. There’s lots of great information on the Mouth Cancer Foundation website to support and help you, and also don’t forget, we are here to support and advise you to.

By ensuring you book you and your families screening once a year, you not only set up a great routine of care for life, you also ensure, should the worst happen, we can be there to give you treatment quickly and effectively.

The importance of having regular mouth cancer screening

Studies have shown that every year more than 6,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with oral cancer, and the numbers are growing year after year. One of the major issues with oral cancer is that many people are unaware of the symptoms and as a result, most cases are not diagnosed at an early stage. For this reason, a mouth cancer screening and regular dental check-ups are imperative.

At The Scottish Centre for Excellence in Dentistry in Glasgow, we believe that prevention is better than cure and that’s why we urge our patients to visit the dental practice regularly. In the early stages, mouth cancer is often painless, and the physical signs may not be obvious, but your dentist will be able to trace them following a thorough examination of your face, mouth and throat.

Mouth Cancer Screening in GlasgowWhat to expect during a mouth cancer screening

Mouth cancer screening is a fast and painless procedure. Your dentist will simply examine your mouth and check for signs of abnormal tissue or other changes. Specialised equipment and modern technology allow us to see changes that are not visible to the naked eye. The test only lasts a couple of minutes and we will also discuss with you the causes and symptoms of oral cancer, so you can keep an eye out for possible warning signs in the future.

Getting informed about oral cancer

Oral cancer affects the soft tissues in your mouth or throat and the most common symptoms include mouth ulcers and sores that take a lot of time to heal, red or white patches in the mouth as well as lumps and bumps in the mouth or throat. Additional symptoms may include a persistent sore throat.

The main risk factors for oral cancer include smoking, drinking excessive amounts of alcohol, a poor diet lacking in nutrients, and HPV infection.

Get in touch

If you would like to find out more about oral cancer or arrange a mouth cancer screening check, contact us today. Our goal is to discover oral, head and neck cancers early on, before patients present symptoms that are more difficult to treat.