Dentists Detect Early Mouth, Gum, & Throat Cancer
TCD offers premium dental health care services in Madison, including complete oral cancer screenings for early detection. This early detection, combined with regular preventative dental care visits, is crucial to maintaining your oral health.
Madison WI Dental Cancer Screening Services: Your Best Bet in Stopping Oral Cancer
One person dies from oral cancer every hour, accounting for 8,000 deaths each year. The 5-year survival rate is only 50% due to late stage diagnosis and has not improved in the past 50 years. This is due primarily to the fact that during this time, no one had changed the way to screen for the disease (a visual and manual examination of the oral cavity, head and neck).
Planning an oral cancer screening at Total Care Dental can catch early-stage oral cancer and save your life. Don’t take your chances with oral cancer, make sure to schedule an early detection screening the next time you are at our Madison dentist’s office.
Madison's Best Early Oral Cancer Detection with ViziLite Plus
In order to catch cancer at its earliest stage, Total Care Dental Madison offers a new method of detection called ViziLite Plus. Fluorescent light is used to detect a cancerous or precancerous lesion unseen by the naked eye. This painless procedure only takes a few minutes and allows our dental health professionals to identify and evaluate abnormal tissue.
ViziLite studies show no false negatives and significantly fewer false positives than standard visual examinations. This means the light correctly identifies all cancerous and precancerous cells and limits unnecessary biopsies.
NOTE: Keep in mind a positive reading for abnormal cells does not automatically mean you have oral cancer. Oral tissue damage caused by biting your cheek or food irritations can be identified by the ViziLite examination. Your dentist will review the results of the test to determine whether the lesion is dangerous or benign.
Know What Oral Cancer Looks Like
- Sores or ulcers
- Red or white patches on the tongue, cheeks, gums, etc.
- Lumps/bumps on the throat, tongue, gums, lip or neck
- Difficulty swallowing or chewing
- Feeling of something stuck in the throat
- Unexplained numbness, pain or bleeding in the mouth
- Long-lasting sore throat
- Ear pain
- Dentures fit loosely
- Voice changes
The earliest stages of oral cancer are often painless, but a burning sensation can develop as the cancer grows. If you have any of these symptoms for more than two weeks or are having trouble moving your tongue or swallowing, contact Madison’s Total Care Dental immediately. Our dentist’s cancer screening services are the best way to find and cure oral cancers.
Who is at Risk for Oral Cancer?
Everyone should have an oral cancer screening at least once a year during a regular dental exam. Some people are especially susceptible to oral cancer. These groups of people are statistically more at risk to develop oral cancer:
- Men (twice as likely to get oral cancer than women)
- Anyone 18 or older, but especially people over 55
- People with HPV (human papillomavirus)
- Family history of cancer
- Tobacco users
- Heavy drinkers
- Excessive sun exposure
Whether or not you fall into one of these categories, be aware of your oral health and keep an eye out for symptoms of oral cancer.
Even if you practice excellent oral hygiene, you can’t always prevent oral cancer. Nearly 25% of all newly diagnosed cases have been in patients under 40 with no risk factors. Take advantage of our Madison dentists’ preventative dental care services to catch oral cancer before it’s too late.
Oral Cancer Screening Cost
Screenings from Total Care Dental are highly affordable. We accept major dental insurers and provide many financing plans so all our patients can get oral cancer screenings. Catching and treating oral cancer in its early stages is more affordable for patients than treatment after a late stage diagnosis.
Oral Cancer Treatment: There Are Options
All those statistics about diagnoses and mortality rates can be frightening, but there is hope. When oral cancer is caught early enough, treatment has a 90% success rate! There are a number of treatment options, often used in combination:
- Surgery to remove cancerous tissue
- Radiation therapy to destroy cancer cells and shrink tumors
- Chemotherapy to kill cancer cells using anti-cancer drugs
Depending on the stage of development when the cancer is diagnosed, the patient may require only one type of treatment or all three. Some patients also make use of supportive care to control pain, symptoms, side effects of treatment and emotional effects.