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Tips for Doing a Self-Exam While Looking for Oral Cancer

Posted on 12/20/2018 by Dr. Simon K Choyee
Tips for Doing a Self-Exam While Looking for Oral CancerEarly detection is a key to successfully battling any type of cancer. Many people depend on a health professional to look for the signs of cancer. It often means they wait too long to start any type of treatment. The answer to this is finding out how to perform self-exams to help detect cancer. There are a few things to know about how to perform an effective self-exam for oral cancer.

Start with Risk Factors

The first part of any self-exam for oral cancer is to consider the different risk factors. Some of the risk factors include smoking, family history or previous bouts of cancer. When you are at a higher risk for cancer, you need to take more time to do self-exams in addition to checking with a professional regularly.

Performing a Self-Exam

The key to a good self-exam is patience. It is not something to rush through. Take the time to check the different areas carefully. The areas that are most at risk for oral cancer include the sides of the tongue, the floor of the mouth, the soft palate, under the tongue and the tonsils.

A good self-exam will go through these areas.

•  Face - Look for symmetry. The two sides of the face should look balanced.
•  Lips - Pull the lips down to look for unusual texture or color.
•  Gums - Check the gums for any spots or discoloration.
•  Cheeks - Check the inside of the cheeks for anything abnormal.
•  Tongue - Check the top and the bottom of the tongue for anything that does not look normal.
•  The palate - Inspect the palate as far back as you can see.
•  Neck - Feel the sides of the neck for any unusual bumps.

A self-exam for oral cancer is the first step to getting help. If during the self-exam, you notice anything out of the ordinary do not ignore it and hope it will go away. Take the time to make an appointment with our office to get the help of one of our professionals.

Call our office today for an appointment.
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