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What Happens During an Oral Cancer Screening in Miami? - People First Dentistry | Miami, Kendall, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables

What Happens During an Oral Cancer Screening in Miami?


Oral cancer screenings are a very important part of your biannual dental exam and could save your life. Read on for what you can expect during an oral cancer screening in Miami. 

Do I Need an Oral Cancer Screening? 

Oral cancer screenings are essential in catching oral cancer, also known as oropharyngeal cancer, in its precancerous or early cancer stages. This results in a higher chance of survival. 

It’s estimated that in 2023, there will be over 54,000 new cases of oral cancer, and over 21% of those will result in death. Know your risk factors to better assess your possibility of oropharyngeal cancer. 

Risk factors include: 

  • Tobacco use
  • Regular alcohol use
  • HPV infection
  • Frequent sun exposure (lip cancer) 
  • Gender (Oral cancer is more than twice as common in men as women.)

Does an Oral Cancer Screening Hurt? 

In short, no! It can feel weird or silly when the dentist is stretching your mouth in different directions, but it won’t hurt. There are a few techniques used to screen for oral cancer. 

The most common is a visual and physical exam. The dentist will do things like lift your tongue up, depress your tongue to see the back of your throat, stretch your lips around to see the gums above and below the teeth, press on the floor of your mouth, or even pull your tongue out a bit. 

Another way to screen for oral cancer is to use a blue dye or light that can help detect precancerous or cancerous lesions because of the color they reflect. 

If the dentist finds or suspects a precancerous or cancerous lesion, they will discuss what further steps to take in the process. Most often, this includes consulting an oral surgeon and oncologist. 

Where Can I Get an Oral Cancer Screening in Miami?

Dr. Villavicencio and the rest of the staff here at People First Dentistry really do put people and their health first. We believe oral health is part of total body health. Come see us for your comprehensive oral cancer screening in Miami!

Contact us today at 786-321-7035, or request an appointment online to put yourself and your oral health first!