The appearance of your intraoral tissues can be very telling. When your mouth is healthy, the tissues are smooth and pink. However, when an issue is present, your intraoral tissues may take on a different appearance. Growths, lesions, and other abnormalities may appear. At Treasure Valley Oral & Facial Surgery, we are experts in oral pathology, or diagnosing and treating a variety of different diseases that affect the health of your mouth to improve your oral health and your quality of life.
Diseases that Can Impact Your Oral Health
There are some different oral diseases that can impact the health of your mouth. With oral pathology, we can diagnose, and treat issues such as:
Oral cancer is one of the most devastating oral diseases. It is the largest group of head and neck cancers and can begin anywhere inside of the mouth, including the lips, tongue, cheeks, palate, and gums. Detecting and treating oral cancer in its earliest stages is essential for eliminating the disease and restoring your oral health. If diagnosed in later stages, oral cancer can be more difficult to treat, and can even be fatal.
One of the biggest issues with oral cancer is that the earliest stages are difficult to detect. This is what makes routine dental exams so crucial. During regular dental exams, an oral cancer screening is performed. During this screening, your intraoral tissues are assessed for unusual growths and abnormalities. In the early stages of oral cancer, you might not ever know that anything is wrong. By the time you notice any symptoms of the disease, it has progressed into something more severe and also becomes more difficult to treat.
Diagnosing Oral Diseases
When any unusual growths or other abnormalities are found in your mouth, we can diagnose the cause and provide you with the treatment you need. Diagnosing different diseases involves a thorough oral exam. We begin by looking over your mouth and identifying the characteristics of the abnormality. We assess its size, shape, color, and border. X-rays and other digital images may also be taken of your mouth. These images can help us to determine the severity of the issue as well as assess any damage to your jaw and facial bones.
Diagnosing oral diseases may also require a soft tissue biopsy. This is a procedure that involves removing a small portion of the abnormality so that it can be more closely examined under a microscope. We can see the tissue on a cellular level so that we can determine if there are any cancerous or precancerous cells present.
Once we have diagnosed the disease affecting your mouth, we are then able to formulate a treatment plan. Surgery is often required to restore your oral health. Surgery may be recommended to remove an abnormality from your intraoral tissue, such as a cancerous growth. In many cases, some of the tissue surrounding the growth is also removed to ensure complete elimination of the growth. A follow up visit is essential for ensuring that the issue is treated completely.
With oral pathology, we can diagnose and treat a variety of different diseases that can significantly impact the health of your mouth. Call Treasure Valley Oral & Facial Surgery today at (208) 994-6227 for more information and to schedule your appointment.