Oral Cancer Screenings Specialist

Novato Family Dental Care

Cosmetic & General Dentistry located in Novato, CA

Cancer can develop and grow without any indication that it’s there. With oral cancer screenings from dentists Clayton Perry, DDS, and Vincent Freemantle, DDS, at Novato Family Dental Care in Novato, California, you can get a cancer diagnosis as early as possible even without symptoms. To book your next examination, complete with an oral cancer screening, call Novato Family Dental Care or schedule online today.

Oral Cancer Screenings Q & A

What are oral cancer screenings?

Oral cancer screenings are tests from your dentist designed to detect signs of oral cancer before you have any symptoms. When you detect oral cancer early, the disease is highly treatable, and you have options to stop it from spreading and cure it.

At Novato Family Dental Care, the team examines the following areas for abnormalities that might represent oral cancer:

  • Lips 
  • Face
  • Jaw 
  • Neck
  • Tongue
  • Gums
  • Roof of mouth
  • Inside cheeks


If your dentist detects something abnormal during a screening, they may want to test it with a biopsy. A biopsy removes a sample of cells so the team at Novato Family Dental Care can examine them and test them for cancer. 

The team performs oral cancer screenings as part of some of your regular examinations. It’s easy for your dentist to look inside and around your mouth for signs that might indicate cancer or cell changes that could eventually develop into cancer of the mouth.

Who should get oral cancer screenings?

While anyone can benefit from an oral cancer screening, it’s especially beneficial to get oral cancer screenings if you have a high risk for oral cancer due to certain behaviors or histories. The team can talk to you about your personal risk the next time you come in for an examination or treatment. 

You might benefit from oral cancer screenings if you:

  • Use tobacco (including cigarettes, cigars, and chewing tobacco)
  • Have a history of heavy alcohol consumption
  • Have had oral cancer in the past
  • Have a history of significant sun exposure


The American Cancer Society recommends oral cancer screenings every three years for individuals over 20 years old and screenings every year for individuals over 40. 

What are some early signs of oral cancer?

While an oral cancer screening can detect signs of cancer before you realize anything is amiss, it’s important to become familiar with the signs and symptoms of oral cancer that can arise as it develops. Some people get no symptoms at all from oral cancer while others experience:

  • Unexplained bleeding from the mouth
  • Red or white patches inside the mouth
  • Persistent sore throat
  • Sores inside the mouth that don’t heal within two weeks


If you notice any of these symptoms, call Novato Family Dental Care right away to make an appointment for an examination. 

To schedule an appointment for an examination complete with an oral cancer screening, call Novato Family Dental Care or book online today.