General and Preventative Dental Procedures at Vero Dental
General dentistry and preventive dentistry like what Vero Dental offers our patients in Lehi, UT involves establishing habits that will keep your teeth healthy help you avoid cavities, gum disease, enamel wear, and more. During your regular visit, your dental hygienist will point out any issues that you may be having with your oral hygiene.
Your hygienist will perform a cleaning, dental exam, an oral cancer exam, and take any necessary X-rays. We will also evaluate the appearance of your teeth and recommend any aesthetic procedures that will enhance your smile, such as cosmetic or orthodontic procedures.
What You Can Do to Prevent Tooth Decay
Oral Cancer Screening
Risk Factors for Oral Cancer
Several risk factors increase a person’s chances of developing oral cancer. Some of them are out of our control, such as age and sex. Men are twice as likely as women to develop oral cancer, and it is far more common in people over 45. But there are plenty of risk factors that we can control, the biggest of which is tobacco. 85% of oral cancer cases are linked to some kind of tobacco use (even e-cigarettes). The next-biggest avoidable risk factor is frequent, heavy alcohol consumption.
A few of the less-obvious risk factors include getting too much sun (which can cause lip cancer), HPV, and neglecting your oral hygiene, particularly if you also smoke. You can eliminate this risk factor by brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and scheduling regular dental appointments.
Oral Cancer Symptoms to Watch Out For
Unfortunately, even people with none of these risk factors will sometimes develop oral cancer anyway, which is why it’s important to be able to recognize the symptoms:
- A sore in the mouth or on the lip that doesn’t heal
- Red or white patches inside the mouth
- Unusual lump on lip, mouth, neck, or throat, or strange thickness in the cheek
- Persistent sensation of having something stuck in the throat
- Numbness of mouth or tongue
- Difficulty with chewing or swallowing
- Chronic bad breath
If you do have one or more of the risk factors for oral cancer, getting regular general health screenings can catch it before you even notice any symptoms. The earlier oral cancer is caught, the easier it is to beat it.