March 17, 2017
As part of Oral Cancer Awareness Month, Dental Associates Waukesha, located at 1211 Dolphin Ct., is providing free oral cancer exams to the public on April 7 and 21 from noon to 3 p.m. Appointments are recommended and can be made by calling (262) 436-3363. Walk-ins are also welcome, but patients will be seen on a first-come, first-served basis.
According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, nearly 50,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral cavity or oropharyngeal cancer this year, causing approximately 9,700 deaths, which is roughly equivalent to one person dying every hour.
Oral cavity cancer (also known as oral cancer) starts in the mouth. Oropharyngeal cancer is found in the oropharynx, which is the part of the throat just behind the mouth. The oropharynx includes the base of the tongue, the soft palate, the tonsils and the side and back wall of the throat. The oral cavity and oropharynx help people breathe, talk, eat, chew and swallow. In addition, minor salivary glands throughout the oral cavity and oropharynx make saliva that keeps the mouth moist and helps digest food.
During an oral exam, Dr. Brian Cross will check the lips, gums, tongue, cheeks and roof and floor of the mouth for signs of cancer. The most common symptom of oral cancer is a persistent mouth sore that does not heal within two weeks. Persistent mouth pain and a white or red patch on the gums, tongue, tonsil or lining of the mouth are also signs.
The American Cancer Society notes that oral cancer and oropharyngeal cancer are twice as common in men as in women. The difference may be related to the use of alcohol and tobacco, a major risk factor that has been seen more commonly in men than women. The average age at diagnosis for oral and oropharyngeal cancer is 62. Two-thirds of individuals with the disease are over age 55.
Founded in 1974, Dental Associates is Wisconsin’s largest family-owned dental group practice with 14 clinics throughout the state and nearly 850 staff members, including 100 doctors and 629 operatories. Dental Associates provides complete family dental services, both general and specialty dentistry, under one roof, from pediatric dentistry to specialized dental services for older adults, with a focus on excellent care that is affordable, accessible and personalized. Dental Associates is accredited by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC). Dental Associates is the exclusive provider for CarePlus Dental Plans, which provides affordable and high-quality dental health care insurance options to all Wisconsin residents.
Darin Schumacher, 920-431-1742