Dentists in Anstey, Leicester 33 The Nook, Anstey, Leicester LE7 7AZ


0116 464 9002

Book Consultation

Mouth Cancer Screening

Mouth Cancer Screening

Studies show that mouth cancer is on the increase and that early detection dramatically improves the chances of recovery.

An oral cancer screening is a visual and physical part of your dental check-up. We examine the oral cavity and connected tissues. It can reassure a patient that there are no apparent problems, or trigger early treatment if there are. At 33 Dental Practice, our thorough mouth cancer screening, means you can rest assured that any suspicious lesions will be detected early.

What parts of the face are included in a Mouth Cancer Screening process?

The face, neck, lips and oral cavity are all major parts of a screening for oral cancer. Before the screening, the patient must take out all removable dental appliances to expose every area.

Whether the patient is sitting upright or lying down, our dentists look for asymmetries, swellings, bumps, patches of colour, ulcerations or other abnormalities. To look inside the mouth, the dentist will use a light and mirror to see clearly, and a tongue depressor to hold down the tongue and look at the back of the mouth. The patient may be asked to say “Ahh” to expose areas in the throat that are otherwise difficult to see. Other tools can help the dentist evaluate the gums, inner cheeks, roof of the mouth, tonsils, throat and underneath the tongue.

After or during the visual exam, the dentist also touches the head and cheeks, around the jaw, under the chin and in the oral cavity to feel for unusual nodules or masses. Another sign of a potential problem is immobility in normally mobile tissue, and the patient may be asked whether physical contact there causes any discomfort. Oral cancer symptoms can be painful, but a painless swelling can still be a sign of problems elsewhere. The patient might also be asked to swallow while the throat is examined,

An oral cancer screening is precautionary, not diagnostic. If a doctor or dentist finds nothing abnormal during the exam, the patient may be asked to return at regular intervals for further screening – especially if he or she uses tobacco, drinks alcohol or practices other behaviour that increases the risk of oral cancer.

What happens if the dentist detects a symptom during the Mouth Cancer Screening process?

Sometimes dentist will refer a patient for further tests to get to the bottom of a certain symptom. Keep in mind, results that require further investigation are not necessarily a cancer diagnosis. Even if cancer is ultimately found, early diagnosis reduces treatment related health problems down the road.

Those undergoing treatment for oral cancer should use a toothbrush that has extra soft bristles especially for sensitive gums. Cancer treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiation, can also affect a patient’s dental health. Common symptoms include dry mouth; difficulty chewing, swallowing, tasting or speaking; tooth decay; a burning feeling in the mouth or throat; mouth sores; and infections in the mouth.

A screening for oral cancer is not just a physical exam; it’s an opportunity for a person to talk to their dentist about fears and concerns, and to ask for advice about reducing his risk. If you’re nervous about a screening, write a list of questions before you come to see us. Just a short examination can put your mind at ease.

If you have any sores, lumps or long-term ulcers in your mouth, no matter how small, it is very important that you come in to have it looked at.

What Are The Most Common Symptoms of Oral Cancer?

  • Swellings/thickenings, lumps or bumps, rough spots/crusts/or eroded areas on the lips, gums, or other areas inside the mouth.
  • The development of velvety white, red, or speckled (white and red) patches in the mouth.
  • Unexplained bleeding in the mouth.
  • Unexplained numbness, loss of feeling, or pain/tenderness in any area of the face, mouth, neck, or ear.
  • Persistent sores on the face, neck, or mouth that bleed easily and do not heal within 2 weeks.
  • A soreness or feeling that something is caught in the back of the throat.
  • Difficulty chewing or swallowing, speaking, or moving the jaw or tongue.
  • Hoarseness, chronic sore throat, or change in voice (especially slurred speech).
  • A change in the way your teeth or dentures fit together.
  • Dramatic weight loss.
  • A lump in the neck.

Factors such as heavy smoking and heavy drinking are often implicated in oral cancer. It most often affects older people and is slightly more common in men, but like any form of cancer it can affect anyone at any time – young patients who do not smoke, drink or chew tobacco have been diagnosed. For that reason it is vital to attend regular dental appointments and to get anything suspicious checked.

Because smoking is strongly linked with many forms of cancer and other dental problems, we always encourage our patients to quit smoking. An excellent source of information is the Mouth Cancer Foundation if you require any further information.

Make an Enquiry

COVID-19 update

Many of you will be aware that during the latest Covid 19 update dental practices have been given the green light to re-open the surgery from 8th June. Whilst this is good news, there are a number of procedures that we have being putting in place to make treatment safe for our patients and staff, as we are sure you will appreciate, this is taking some time to set up.

Our intention is, if at all possible to commence opening on the 8th June but this is entirely dependent on our ability to obtain training and appropriate PPE which as you know there is a great shortage of. This equipment will be essential for us to be able to operate.

From 8th- 29th of June we will be prioritising the most urgent of cases including those who have been experiencing problems during this lockdown period. We will contact you directly to arrange an appointment. This period may be extended if required.

Rest assured we are trying our utmost to source this PPE as soon as possible to enable us to extend our treatment further to include fillings, crown/bridge work, root treatments and surgical extractions, scale & polish ect.

We anticipate that it will be several weeks before we will be able to commence these more advanced procedures.

This is a rapidly changing environment which we are adapting to as quickly as we possibly can. We really appreciate your patience and understanding throughout this difficult period and look forward to welcoming you back to the practice soon.

#staysafe #stayhome #wemissyouall