When it comes to health, we often neglect the important things such as going to the dentist regularly. Most people also do not realize the benefits of immunization and screening for early detection of disease. However, there is such a thing as personal accountability. As such, we all need to be responsible in terms of managing our own health and doing the necessary things to prevent disease or infection.
Visiting the dentist at least twice a year helps a great deal in the early detection of potentially serious conditions such as oral cancer, which can develop in the oral cavity or oropharynx. Oral cancer usually begins in the tongue and floor of the mouth when little flat squamous cells that cover the surfaces of the mouth, tongue and lips turn into cancerous tumors also known as carcinomas.
As oral cancer spreads or metastasizes, it gets carried through the lymphatic system and eventually manifests as lymph nodes in the neck. Before long, it spreads into the neck, lungs, and other organs unless treated from the outset.
Tobacco, alcohol, sun exposure and a previous history of neck and head cancer are some of the leading risk factors for oral cancer. Probably one of the best ways to prevent oral cancer is by quitting smoking or never taking up this habit in the first place. Despite its perceived benefits in relieving stress and fighting weight gain, tobacco smoke contains a lethal dose of carcinogens or cancer-causing substances. Ask your Las Vegas dentist for help in finding a local smoking cessation program, which may involvement some medication and therapy.
Each time you visit a Las Vegas dentist, a screening test may be included along with other routine checks to determine your overall oral health. The dentist will look for telltale signs such as sores or discolored tissue. Your dentist may also perform an oral brush biopsy is upon detecting suspicious tissue growth. If cancer is suspected, a biopsy may be required. This is usually done under local anesthesia, so you don’t have to worry about any pain.
If you believe that you are at risk of having oral cancer, see your Las Vegas dentist right away and get tested. Do not wait until it is too late. As clichéd as it may seem, prevention will indeed always be better than cure.
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