Oral Cancer Screenings
In Rancho Mission Viejo

What Is An Oral Cancer Screening?

Oral cancer screenings are part of every six-month preventive appointment at Monarch Dental Arts. The procedure takes just a few minutes. Dr. Anna Paholiouk will examine your mouth to look for common signs and symptoms of oral cancer, ensuring your mouth is healthy and cancer-free. And, in the rare case she notices a potential issue, she can help you seek the proper treatment right away, such as a biopsy. Contact us now to schedule your next teeth cleaning in Orange County.

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Did you know…

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Oral cancer often goes unnoticed by doctors unless it’s recognized early by a dentist. That’s why routine oral cancer screenings are so important.

Ready to schedule a consult?

Call 949-392-4222

How Oral Cancer Screenings Work

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Discussing your health & risk factors

If you’re a new patient at Monarch Dental Arts, Dr. Paholiouk will want to discuss your overall health and your risk factors for oral cancer with you. For example, HPV infection, smoking, or heavy sun exposure may raise your risk of oral cancer significantly.

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Oral cancer screening and examination

Next, Dr. Paholiouk will examine the inside of your mouth. If necessary, she will use a small, flexible camera with a bright light on the end to look closely at potential lesions and other abnormalities in your mouth.

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Biopsy (if needed)

Most of the time, Dr. Paholiouk will give you a clean bill of health. Statistically, oral cancer is quite rare compared to other types of cancer. However, if she notices an issue, she will recommend a biopsy to have the lesion or tissue checked for cancer.

More About Oral Cancer

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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Oral Cancer?

This depends on the type and extent of the condition. Every person is different. However, you may notice things like a lip sore or mouth sore that doesn’t heal, patches of white or reddish tissue inside your mouth, or strange lumps, bumps, growths, and lesions.

These issues do not always indicate oral cancer, and can be caused by other issues. A bump below your tongue, for example, could be a harmless bone growth called a “dental torus.” However, it’s still a good idea to see a dentist regularly to catch these issues early, if present.

If the cancer is more advanced, it may cause more serious signs and symptoms like loose teeth, feeling like you have a lump in your throat, mouth pain, difficulty or pain when swallowing, and ear pain. If you notice these issues, you should see your primary care physician right away.

When Will I Get My Results?

Unless you get a biopsy, you’ll get your results immediately. If Dr. Anya determines that your mouth is healthy, she’ll be able to tell you that right away, giving you peace of mind.

However, if you do require a biopsy, it may take several days to have the tissue analyzed for cancerous cells and to get your results, so keep this in mind. Depending on the situation, you may also need to be referred to another dentist or oral surgeon for your biopsy.

Did you know…

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About 178 million Americans are missing at least one tooth and nearly 40 million Americans have lost all their teeth.

Interested in dental implants?

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Have questions about implant dentistry? Find answers here. 

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How are dental implants made?

A dental implant is made of two parts: a small, screw-shaped piece of titanium called the post, and the restoration, which is usually a dental crown and abutment. Posts are manufactured in a variety of pre-selected sizes to ensure each patient gets the right implant for their needs. In contrast, the restoration is completely custom-made. After your dentist places your dental implant, they will take impressions of your teeth and send them to a dental lab. 

There, a technician will create a long-lasting, durable dental implant restoration out of porcelain or another high-quality material. This restoration will be sent back to our office, and it will be attached to your dental implant, completing your implant procedure.

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How long do dental implants last?

Dental implants typically last up to 30 years or more with proper placement and care. In fact, it’s very common for patients to keep their implants for the rest of their lives. 

However, the dental implant restoration, such as a dental crown or set of overdentures, usually will not last this long. Your restoration is exposed to regular wear and tear from chewing, biting, and more, and may need to be replaced a few times over the years. 

Can dental implants get infected?

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It is possible for dental implants to become infected. This is known as “peri-implantitis.” However, this is a very rare complication, and it typically only occurs if the implant is not cared for and kept clean after surgery. 

You can avoid peri-implantitis by following your dentist’s instructions while recovering, and by brushing and flossing regularly after your implant has healed. 


Will dental implants stop bone loss?

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Yes. Bone loss occurs when your jaw bone is no longer stimulated by the natural pressure of chewing and biting. Your tooth transmits this force through the root and into your jaw bone, which keeps your jaw bone healthy. 

When you lose a tooth, this process stops, and the jaw bone tends to weaken. Since the post of the dental implant is placed directly into the jaw bone and acts as a tooth root, it restimulates your jaw bone by transmitting the force of chewing and biting once again.


Can dental implants be done in one day?

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Some types of dental implant systems can be done in one day. The restoration is usually temporary until you have fully healed from your dental implant placement surgery. This solution allows you to speak and eat normally, however, the restoration is temporary. 


As your mouth heals, you’ll attend appointments at your doctor’s office where impressions will be taken. These impressions will guide the manufacturing of your restoration. This permanent restoration will be a more durable, long-lasting, and natural-looking prosthetic than your temporaries.


Did you know…

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Dental implants are the only restorative option that preserves and stimulates your natural bone structure.

Ready for your next dental appointment?

Call 949-392-4222