What Is Preventive Dentistry?
Preventive dentistry focuses on practices and treatments that help prevent oral health problems from developing or worsening. This area of dentistry emphasizes regular dental exams, cleanings, and screenings to catch potential issues early when they are easiest to treat. Preventive dental care helps patients maintain good oral hygiene and avoid more invasive treatments down the road.
Some common preventive dentistry services include:
- Professional teeth cleanings
- Fluoride treatments
- Oral cancer screenings
- Comprehensive exams
At JLM Dental Studio in Smyrna and East Point, GA, Dr. Manning offers a full range of preventive dental services. Regular preventive care is essential for protecting your smile and your overall health.
What Are Oral Cancer Screenings?
Oral cancer screenings are an important part of preventive dental care. These simple exams allow Dr. Manning to look for early signs of oral cancer or precancerous lesions. When caught early, oral cancer has much higher survival rates and treatment options.
During an oral cancer screening, Dr. Manning will carefully examine all tissues of your head, neck, mouth, and throat. She will inspect your lips, cheeks, gums, tongue, and other areas for any abnormalities. Some signs Dr. Manning looks for include:
- White or red patches
- Pain, tenderness, or numbness
- Lumps, bumps, or growths
- Changes in existing moles
- Difficulty swallowing or chewing
In addition to a visual exam, Dr. Manning may also feel for lumps or swelling in the neck and lymph nodes. If anything unusual is detected, she may recommend follow-up tests like an oral biopsy. Early detection is key with oral cancer.