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How to Do Tests on Yourself to Look for Early Signs of Oral Cancer


Posted on 3/15/2020 by Cole Anderson, DMD, MS
How to Do Tests on Yourself to Look for Early Signs of Oral CancerTaking an active at-home role in your dental health and oral care is something that everyone should do for themselves, regardless of age.

While this is certainly by no means an excuse to become lax in one's regular trips to the dentist, as well as any procedures or practices that they might recommend, checking yourself out for potential issues (such as oral cancer) which may be developing could mean the difference between early detection or a much more serious condition. Here are tips for performing proper self-examinations:

Make it a Regular Routine


Most things don't end up being of much benefit when we don't make them a regularly scheduled practice. This is also true of our home dental care routine. Imagine if you only brushed your teeth once a week or once every other week. It would offer much less benefit than doing it twice a day. Likewise, performing tests at home to look for early indicators of cancer will be much less effective if done once a year as opposed to once a month.

Thoroughly Examine Your Gums, Inner Lips, and Tongue


As far as the actual procedure and techniques to use go, a simple but thorough examination is all that is necessary. Using a light and a small, handheld mirror, take a close look at each area of the mouth, including the upper and lower jaw line, teeth and gums, all around and under the tongue, as well as the back of the throat. You also want to feel around with a finger to see if you can detect any rising lumps or bumps.

If you see any signs of discoloration, infection or puss, or feel any bumps, please get in contact with us immediately so we can schedule a more detailed examination to find out the specific issues you may be dealing with.

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