Dentist Guide for Patients for an Oral Cancer Screening

Dentist Guide for Patients for an Oral Cancer Screening

An oral cancer screening is vital for your dental and general health. This exam is important in the early detection and treatment of oral cancer. This screening can happen during routine dental exams. If you want to know more about your coming oral cancer screening, here is a dentist guide for patients to review.

What dentists will look for

The dentist will check for oral cancer signs as part of a routine. Checking the lips, gums, tongue, and the inner lining of the cheeks will begin. The floor and roof of the mouth will come next. Oral cancer signs to look for are white or red patches, bleeding sores, and sores that do not heal. Other signs are crusted areas, lumps, and rough spots.

Screening for pain, tenderness, or numbness will also take place. The patient can tell the dentist about any difficulty moving the jaw or tongue. The dentist should also know about speaking, chewing, or swallowing difficulties. Being open with the dentist during the oral cancer screening will give targeted results.

Extraoral exam

Part of the oral cancer screening is checking the outside of the mouth. The dentist will inspect the face and see if everything has balance. Then, the dentist will also check for lesions, discoloration, swelling, or growths. Palpation of the facial bones and soft tissue will happen to see if there are masses.

The dentist will also check the eye movements for cranial nerve function. The dentist will also feel for any abnormal growths in and around the ears. For the neck check, the patient’s neck must be at the eye level of the dentist. The dentist will also inspect the thyroid gland for growths and tenderness while swallowing. Then, the dentist will inspect the lips while the mouth is closed and open. The outer and inner surfaces of the lips will undergo checking as well.

Intraoral cavity exam

The dentist will also inspect the inside of the mouth as part of the oral cancer screening. Noting any irregular color or texture will follow. Pinching the inner lining of the cheeks a little will enable the dentist to see if there are tumors. The dentist will ask the patient to move the tongue from side to side. Inspecting for swelling, lesions, and spasms will happen as well. The dentist will also note any wounds and limitations in movement.

Inspecting the inner parts of the mouth will include checking the hard and soft palate. The roof and floor or the mouth will have proper oral cancer screening as well. The patient will need to open the mouth. The dentist can provide rest periods to prevent strains.

A complete oral cancer screening will involve all aspects of the mouth, face, and neck

Your dentist can provide an oral cancer screening during your next routine dental visit. This will help determine if the patient has abnormal growths or discharge in the mouth. Any infection around the eyes and mouth could be a sign. Your dentist will make a thorough check to provide a correct diagnosis and referral.

Are you considering oral cancer screening in the Phoenix area? Get more information at


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