ViziLite Oral Cancer Screening in Carmichael, CA
Guard Against Oral Cancer with Early Detection
Oral Cancer is now the fifth most common cancer in the world, it kills about one-third of those diagnosed with it, and 28,000 new cases occur each year. And over 25% of oral cancers occur in people who don’t smoke or have other lifestyle risk factors.
Now that we’ve got your attention—there’s hope.
Trouble Spots—Oral Lesions
Are there any red or white spots you haven’t noticed before? Maybe you’ve taken a wait-and-see approach to a small sore you found last week? Any unexplained swelling? Discoloration that doesn’t hurt a lick? Come on in; we need to see what you see.
Most oral lesions, as we call them, are harmless. A piece of crusty French bread with dinner can scratch delicate tissues. But if you use tobacco and alcohol, have or have had HPV, or are being treated for any number of systemic diseases—diabetes, autoimmune disorders among them—that harmless irritation is a red flag. During your dental appointment, we’ll take a closer look. When we find a lesion, suspicious or not, we intend to err on the cautious side.
ViziLite—for Early Detection
In our office, we use ViziLite for early detection of oral cancer. Here is how it works: We have you rinse your mouth with a flavored mouthwash. Next we use a special light stick—similar to those kids play with that lights up when bent—to examine the inside of your mouth for abnormalities that could lead to cancer.
About Oral Cancer
- Accounts for 6% of all cancers
- Symptoms: white spots on gums, “sores that won’t heal”
- Typical victims: smokeless tobacco users; older men; alcohol drinkers
- More than 25% of cases occur in non-smokers under 40
- HPV plays a role in more than 20% of cases
- First to notice symptoms: often, the family dentist
- Early detection can lead to life-saving treatment
The search for a substance that would let a patient slip into merciful oblivion during surgery has been one of mankind’s goals for centuries. In North America, we can thank a dentist, Horace Wells of Connecticut, for the development of nitrous oxide as a form of dental anesthesia.
During the early 1840s, Dr. Horace Wells was looking for ways to make his patients more comfortable during procedures. While watching a demonstration of a popular intoxicant, a drug called “laughing gas,” Dr. Wells saw the possibility of helping his patients. The next day, he had one of his own teeth pulled while he inhaled this new mixture. The operation was a success, and Wells began using “laughing gas” in his practice.
When we elect to use nitrous oxide or “laughing gas” (an odorless gas administered through a mask), it produces a form of conscious relaxation. Although this method is not used in place of a local anesthetic injection, it does raise the threshold of pain, making you more relaxed and comfortable during dental procedures.
Modern dentistry has a lot to offer patients in order to assure a virtually painless treatment session, and that’s how we would like you to feel when you visit our office.
If You’re Anxious…
We Can Help
We recognize that when it comes to dental procedures, some of the most terrible things aren’t going on inside your mouth—but inside your head.
Fear of the dentist’s chair is both normal and understandable. You may be among the 150 million Americans who avoid the dentist altogether. But, truly, it doesn’t have to be that way. So much dental fear is based on false information. Well-meaning friends pass along unsettling stories about procedures—from ages ago! When it comes to truly pain-free dentistry, we’ve made greater strides in just the past few decades than in the entire history of dentistry!
Our entire team is committed to combating the dental fears that come to so many patients. You’re not alone! And we have so many ways of making your experience a positive one.