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Oral Cancer Exams in Chicago

Oral Cancer Screenings

Cancer is one of the world’s deadliest diseases: per year in the United States, 439.2 people in every 100,000 are diagnosed with a form of cancer, and each year 163.5 people per 100,000 die from the disease. More than 50,000 Americans are diagnosed with oral cancer alone every single year.

Oral cancer includes cancers of the cheeks, tongue, lips, palate, throat, sinuses, gums, and floor of the mouth. Like other types of cancer, oral cancer can be deadly if it isn’t diagnosed quickly. For a quick diagnosis, oral cancer screenings are of paramount importance.

We’ve going to take a closer look at oral cancer and cancer screenings, to show you the importance of staying one step ahead of oral cancer and getting screened for the potentially deadly disease on a regular basis.

Identify Mouth Cancer Early

Oral cancer screenings are a very simple process where a dentist checks the mouth for any signs that cancer or precancerous signs are present. This exam can also be performed by a doctor.

The main goal and greatest benefit of oral cancer screenings is to identify oral cancer as early as possible. The sooner that cancer is diagnosed, the greater the chances are that it can be cured.

When a dentist identifies the presence of cancer or signs of precancerous lesions, monitoring and treatment can begin immediately. The dentist may request that the patient returns for a second appointment shortly after the screening to check for developments and arrange a biopsy to test for cancer.

Early identification of cancer opens the door to a much greater variety of treatment options, which is much better in every regard for the patient. When oral cancer is diagnosed early, the survival rate is extremely high.

Screenings Starting at High School Age

Oral cancer is most common in people over the age of 55, with the average age of oral cancer diagnosis being 62. Two-thirds of all oral cancer cases are in patients over 55, of which the vast majority are men – the disease is twice as prevalent in males as it is in females.

While oral cancer isn’t common in younger people, it’s still possible to contract oral cancer at a very young age. Around 1 in 8 cases of oral cancer affect people under the age of 50, which is still a large number.

Due to the potential of getting oral cancer early in life, it’s important to attend screenings as soon as they’re available. For high school students, college students and beyond, oral cancer screenings are available and should be attended!

Oropharyngeal Cancer / Throat Cancer

For people who smoke tobacco or have a history of smoking, it’s even more important to attend an oral cancer screening at a local dental clinic. Smoking is one of the factors that can increase the risk of developing oropharyngeal cancer, or throat cancer.

Oropharyngeal cancer develops behind the mouth in the center of the throat (pharynx), where cancer cells will begin to grow in the throat tissue. Signs that a person has oropharyngeal cancer include ear pain, weight loss, soreness, difficulty swallowing and coughing blood.

Cancer screenings are incredibly important for identifying this type of cancer so it can be diagnosed and treated without delay.

Increase in Oral Cancer Cases

Now more than ever before it’s important to visit your local dentist for an oral cancer screening. It’s estimated that 53,000 individuals will be diagnosed with oropharyngeal or oral cancer in the US in 2019, and there will be a total of 10,860 deaths from oral cancer in the same year.

The number of oropharyngeal cancer cases that are connected to HPV infections are rising in the US. There are also increases in the rates of mouth cancer cases elsewhere in the world. In the UK, rates of mouth cancer per 100,000 people rose by 32% for men and 33% for women between 2002 and 2012.

How Often Should You Have an Oral Cancer Screening?

Compared to some other types of cancer, oral cancers have a particularly high death rate. The death rate is thought to be so high because oral cancer is often discovered at a late stage. This is something that regular oral cancer screenings can help to combat.

For oral cancer diagnosed early on, there’s an 84% survival rate over 5 years, compared to an average 5-year survival rate of 65%: these statistics highlight how important it is to visit a dentist regularly for checks.

The recommended regularity of oral cancer screenings is every 3 years, although this increases to every year for people aged 40+. Different dentists may make different recommendations, all depending on the patient. If a person notices any signs of oral cancer during a self exam – which should be conducted around once every month – then they should contact their dentist without delay.

Oral Cancer Screening Process & What to Expect

Oral cancer screenings are a fairly quick and painless procedure that a dentist can perform during a standard dental checkup. The process involves the dentist checking for signs of unusually colored sores and patches, lumps, spots and abnormalities inside the mouth.

The dentist will also check a person’s lips, tongue, gums, cheeks, chin, jaw and the roof and back of their throat. The main goal is to find anything abnormal. Overall, the process should take no more than around 5 minutes.

To help with the examination, a dentist may also use a screening dye which can dye certain cells in the mouth blue or a screening light that highlights abnormal tissue.

Oral Cancer Screenings at Beautiful Smiles Dental Center

You don’t need to travel far or take much time out of your day to have an oral cancer screening, visit Beautiful Smiles Dental Center for the screening.

Beautiful Smiles Dental Center specializes in preventive, cosmetic, and emergency dental services. You can visit our dental practice in Gurnee, IL for oral exams, cancer screenings and all the dental services that you need to maintain a bright and healthy smile.

 


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Best and Worst foods for your Teeth & Gums

 

Great oral health starts with taking care of your teeth and gums with a good cleaning routine, but it doesn’t just end there! What you eat on a daily basis can have a profound effect on your oral health.

The right foods keep your teeth strong and your gums healthy, helping to prevent bad breath, and serious dental problems like gum disease. The wrong foods could result in poor tooth strength and difficulties fighting oral bacteria which can lead to tooth decay.

So, what should you be eating for healthy teeth and gums, and what should you be limiting to the occasional treat? Here are four examples of excellent foods for great oral health, and four examples of foods that could be doing more harm than good to your teeth and gums…

The Best Four Foods for Your Teeth & Gums

The good news is that there’s an abundance of foods that have amazing oral health benefits. A good diet for your teeth and gums certainly doesn’t have to be a boring diet, here are four top foods that you should definitely try to include to improve your oral health:

Cheese

 

Cheddar, gorgonzola, parmesan, edam… if you love indulging in a spot of cheese, then you’re in luck! Cheese is one of the best foods that you can eat for great oral health. Not only is the calcium in cheese great for keeping your teeth and bone healthy, but cheese is actually thought to increase and balance the pH levels in your mouth.

With the protein in cheese helping to balance the pH level, there’s less risk of acid causing oral problems, which can help to prevent tooth decay in the long run.

Apples

Fruit is a brilliant alternative to processed sweet foods, and there are few fruits that are better for your teeth and gums than apples. Naturally sweet, apples shouldn’t be overindulged in, but an apple a day can at least contribute to keeping the dentist away! The chewing involved in eating an apple can help to cleanse your mouth of bacteria, which is certainly beneficial for avoiding tooth problems, like decay. The unique texture of an apple also provides stimulation to the gums, and the high vitamin content contributes to healthier gums.

If apples are not at the top of your list of favorite foods, then other hard foods, like carrots or celery can have a similar result. Apples, carrots, and celery can all act as a natural toothbrush, helping to keep the mouth clean of food debris and teeth free of plaque.

Onions

 

Onions may not be as delicious of a snack as apples or cheese, but your teeth and gums will thank you for including a little raw onion in your diet. One of the main benefits of a healthy dose of onion is better overall oral health; this is thanks to the sulfur compounds in onions which can kill harmful bacteria in the mouth.

By adding onions to your diet, you can better manage oral bacteria, which helps to keep your gums healthy. With the great microbial properties of onions, you can lower the risk of developing gum disease and prevent cavities.

Leafy Greens

 

There are few ‘top food’ lists that you won’t find leafy greens on, and for good reason. Leafy greens, like spinach, cabbage and broccoli are packed full of nutrients; this is particularly the case with dark green vegetables which often contain high quantities of calcium (excellent for strong teeth), iron (iron deficiency can increase the risk of gum disease), and fiber (reduces the risk of tooth loss and bone loss).

Leafy greens can also help to stimulate saliva production which keeps your mouth free of food debris and plaque. By broadening your diet with these top four oral-friendly foods, you’ll soon be on your way to enjoying healthier teeth and gums!

The Worst Four Foods for Your Teeth & Gums

Not all foods are going to do your teeth and gums as much good as apples or cheese. A few select foods could contribute to serious oral health problems if they’re not consumed in moderation. Here are the four foods to avoid for healthy teeth and gums:

Bread

The first things that you associate bread with might not be tooth decay, gum disease or tooth loss, but they’re a very real risk if you consume bread too often without brushing your teeth immediately after. Bread is very high in starch, which once in the mouth and exposed to saliva, slowly breaks down to form sugar. The sugar will then start to feed bacteria in the mouth, which can lead to acid production; this in turn will start to break down tooth enamel. As bread easily gets stuck between your teeth, the impact it has on your dental health can cause major problems in the long term, like gum disease.

Potato Chips

Potato chips are another carbohydrate that can contribute to dental problems. The processed snack isn’t overly healthy to begin with, but the tendency of small pieces of chips to get stuck between your teeth make them particularly unhealthy for your mouth. Having food stuck between your teeth can cause bad breath, but more worryingly, it also attacks your teeth. The longer the chips spend in your mouth, the more damage they’ll do to your teeth and gums. Like bread, there’s also the risk of the starch in potato chips feeding the plaque on your teeth!

Ice

Adding ice to a cool beverage on a hot day isn’t going to do much damage to your oral health, but if you start biting down on the ice, then your teeth could be at risk. Very hard foods, like ice, can do serious damage to the enamel on your teeth. The short-term issue of enamel loss is increased susceptibility to tooth damage; the long-term result of chewing ice can be cracked and chipped teeth which will require an emergency trip to a dentist in Gurnee IL.

Citrus Fruits

It probably won’t come as much of a surprise that citrus fruits have made the top worst foods list. The high acid content of fruits like lemons, grapefruits, and limes can cause serious damage to your teeth. In the short term, citrus fruits can aggravate mouth sores and in the long term they can slowly erode away the enamel on your teeth, which can lead to severe tooth decay.

However, these fruits can also do a lot of good for your oral health. The high vitamin C content of fruits like oranges and pineapples mean that they come with a burst of anti-inflammatory properties. To manage the benefits of citrus fruits with the potential problems, it’s important to maintain other great oral health habits, like attending regular oral examinations & dental checkups.

Stay on Top of Your Dental Health with Dental Exams in Gurnee IL

If you’re worried about the impact of your diet on the health of your teeth, then attending regular dental exams in Gurnee IL, is the answer. The Beautiful Smiles Dental Center provides a range of preventative and restorative treatments that can help you to keep your teeth and gums healthy and looking and feeling great.

When you visit a Beautiful Smiles dentist in Gurnee, you can arrange for oral examinations & dental checkups with one of our resident dental experts or speak to a cosmetic dentist in Park City, IL. We can diagnose any problems that you may be having with your oral health, spot potential problems early to prevent serious issues, and advise you on the best ways to keep your teeth and gums healthy and problem-free.

By filling your diet with great oral-friendly foods, avoiding the worst foods and staying on top of your oral health with regular trips to your local dentist in Gurnee IL, you can keep your teeth and gums looking great on the outside and healthy on the inside!






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355 S. Greenleaf Ave., Suite E, Park City, IL 60085

847.249.5700

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>> NOTE – Our 2019 summer (JUNE, JULY, AUGUST) hours will be as follows:
Mon and Fri: 9am – 8pm
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Tue/Thu/Sat/Sun: Closed

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