Oral Cancer

At Cosmetic Dentists of Houston, Dr. Amanda Canto has developed a comprehensive oral cancer screening protocol and offers free oral cancer screenings to her patients because early detection is very important.

Regardless of whether you have any of the below symptoms, now is a good time to get screened. Please visit our Nationwide Directory for Free Oral Cancer Screenings or find a dentist or doctor near you who offers oral cancer screenings to the public.

What are the Symptoms of Oral Cancer?

If you are experiencing one or more of the below oral cancer symptoms, you are already overdue for an oral cancer exam:

  • Do you have a sore in your mouth that bleeds easily or refuses to heal?
  • Have you seen a tiny white or red spot/sore anywhere in your mouth?
  • Do you experience pain, tenderness, or numbness anywhere in the mouth or on the lips?
  • Is there any change in color in the tissues of your mouth?
  • Are you having difficulty chewing, swallowing, speaking, or moving the jaw or tongue?
  • Are there any lumps, thickenings, rough spots, or crusty areas in your mouth?
  • Have you felt a change in the way the teeth are aligned?

The Survival Rate for Oral Cancer

According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, approximately 42,000 people will be diagnosed with oral cancer in 2013. ² Out of those 42,000  who are diagnosed this year, 18,000 will not survive 5 years.³

  • The current survival rate for oral cancer is approximately 57%.

    This is a lower rate than than can be expected with cervical cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma, laryngeal cancer, cancer of the testes, thyroid, or skin cancer (malignant melanoma).²

  • The survival rate for oral cancer is very high if detected early – up to 80%

    The treatment and procedures for removal are much easier and less disfiguring the earlier it is detected.

  • The survival rate for oral cancer is very low if detected late.

    Today, most oral cancer is detected only after it has advanced to stage III and IV, when cure rates are only 19%.

Oral cancer does not yet have any standard protocol, such as mammograms for breast cancer or pap smears for cervical cancer. Houston dentist Amanda Canto is trying to change this.

At Cosmetic Dentists of Houston, Dr. Canto offers Free Oral Cancer Screenings with all dental wellness exams, and she has developed a comprehensive oral cancer screening protocol to help educate patients at risk and identify early signs of oral cancer.

Our Oral Cancer Protocol is Designed to:
  • Inform all patients about the risk factors of oral cancer.
  • Identify and educate patients with higher risk for oral cancer.
  • Include regular screenings with wellness exams.
  • Increase the cancer screening schedule for at-risk patients.
  • Spot early signs of oral cancer while it is still easily treatable.
  • Guide patients towards the necessary specialists if necessary.
Awareness and Early Detection Save Lives
“One only has to look at the impact of the annual PAP smear, mammogram, and prostate exam, to see how effectively an aware and involved public can contribute to early detection, when coupled with a motivated medical community. The dental community needs to assume this same leadership role if oral cancer is to be brought down from its undeserved high ranking as a killer.”  – Oral Cancer Foundation

A Proactive Approach to Defeating Oral Cancer:

At Cosmetic Dentists of Houston, Dr. Canto has developed a unique and multilateral approach for oral cancer detection, which utilizes several methods and is customized to match the individual’s risk factor.

  • Questionnaire: to help identify patients with higher risk
  • Salivary Test: to screen for HPV positive results/identify higher risk
  • Oral Cancer Screenings: regularly scheduled with wellness exams (for early detection)
  • Oral CDx (Brush biopsy/ brush cytology): to evaluate early developments, or class II lesions
  • Referral to an Oral Pathologist: if necessary, for further evaluation

Oral cancer is one of the fastest growing cancers in the USA, especially among young people. At Cosmetic Dentists of Houston, Dr. Amanda Canto offers free oral cancer screenings and has developed the Oral Cancer Screening Initiative to set a precedent for dentists across the country to offer free oral cancer screenings to patients during routine check-ups.

Dr. Canto believes that dentists can – and have the responsibility to – significantly increase the survival rate of oral cancer by increasing the rate of early detection. Oral cancer screening initiatives are the proactive way to ensure patient safety from oral cancer and to take action if diagnosed.

  1. Increase awareness of the risks of oral cancer in the general public and encourage patient participation.
  2. Develop a model oral cancer screening protocol (like mamograms for breast cancer and pap smears for cervical cancer) to promote early detection of oral cancer.
  3. Promote OralID and other emerging cancer detection technologies, which enable dentists to provide low cost or complimentary oral cancer screenings to their patients during routine check-ups.
  4. Set a precedent for dentists everywhere to provide low-cost or free cancer screenings to their patients and encourage dentists across the country to add oral cancer screening and education into their routine dental wellness exams.

A Pioneer in Oral Cancer Technology

Dr. Amanda Canto was one of the first dentists in the country to embrace the florescence technology.  When it emerged with VELscope, she was part of their clinician luminary group. And Dr. Canto is now the very first dentist in the world to purchase OralID,  the latest oral cancer screening device using florescence technology.

Learn more about Early Detection with OralID.

oral id box

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