Lynn Dental Care is committed to being on the cutting edge of technology, and believes in the importance of ensuring that patients are receiving the latest and safest technologies in the field. One particular disease that Dr. Lynn studies is that of oral cancer. Oral cancer affects the mouth and throat, and can potentially cause death in patients who are not diagnosed in the early stages. For this reason, oral cancer screenings are offered for all new and established patients in order to ensure overall oral health.
What is oral cancer?
Oral cancer develops when cells in the mouth grow uncontrollably due to a mutation in their DNA. When this happens, the cells multiply and can create tumors or red and/or white patches in the mouth or throat. Oral cancer can also present itself by making it difficult to chew or swallow, and causing pain in the ears. This particular cancer is most often linked to habits such as chewing or smoking tobacco and ingesting large amounts of alcohol. Other factors such as sun exposure, transmitted viruses, and age have also been found to potentially cause oral cancer. Of patients diagnosed with oral cancer, 60% are expected to live longer than 5 years. Therefore it is important to be regularly screened for oral cancer during your routine teeth cleanings
How do you detect oral cancer?
The latest technology used for oral cancer screenings, the Velscope, is a device that can detect oral cancer in the very early stages. The Velscope shines a beam that allows the dentist to see through the first two layers of cells in the mouth, and will highlight any questionable areas of oral tissue. Cancerous tissue will show as dark patches in the mouth under the Velscope, allowing the dentist to monitor or test the areas so that the potential cancer can be diagnosed and treated as early as possible.
How often do you need oral cancer screenings?
Dr. Lynn screens his patients during the initial visit and on recurring hygiene visits. The nature of cancer is that it grows exponentially and without limits, and oral cancer particularly can develop and spread quickly through the mouth which is why it is suggested that patients be screened regularly. Lynn Dental Care understands the devastation that cancer can bring to patients and families, and therefore provides oral cancer screenings as a way to diagnose and treat the disease early so that their patients may live healthy and happy lives.