Advanced technology and partnerships with patients support prevention and early detection of oral cancers
We live up to the Innovative Dental Care name by applying the latest technologies and techniques to maintain or restore your smile’s healthy function and attractive appearance. These technologies complement our “low-tech” yet fundamental approach to dentistry. When patients enjoy a gentle, painless, convenient, and stress-free experience at our Omaha, Nebraska practice, they are more likely to maintain routine visits. These check-ups are necessary to prevent oral problems that threaten the teeth and overall health and wellbeing. So, a stress-free experience starts when you interact with our friendly team and step into our inviting surroundings.
Routine appointments or “dental check-ups” generally involve our skilled hygienists cleaning your teeth and gums and our dentist, Dr. Summer Gutschow, examining your mouth. Regular visits should occur at least twice a year, once every six months. Patients with risk factors for conditions such as tooth decay, gum disease, and oral cancer generally visit us more frequently. That way, Dr. Gutschow can closely monitor your oral health and any changes. Dr. Summer is a breast cancer survivor.
Oral cancer screenings are integrated easily into the regular check-up. The general rule of thumb is that patients’ mouths are checked annually for precancers, cancerous lesions, and other oral abnormalities. Again, if you are at increased risk of developing cancers of the mouth and throat, we recommend more frequent screenings. Risks include:
- Smoking cigarettes or cigars
- Use of “smokeless” chewing tobacco
- Vaping or e-cigarettes, which still expose users to harmful chemicals
- Heavy use of alcohol
- Unprotected exposure to dangerous UV light from the sun’s rays and tanning
We get to know our patients and are empathetic to the hold that these substances that present risks have over people. We work to support you in minimizing or eliminating these risks. It is vital to, during your visit, be complete and upfront with us about any changes to your health and any changes that you have noticed, which might be red flags for cancers; for instance, frequent sore throats, hoarseness, or the sensation that something is “stuck” in your throat.
During your screening, our dentist is also visually looking for and feeling by touch for potential symptoms like lumps, bumps, red or white patches, and persistent sores. She draws from her considerable oral pathology background to sample and evaluate suspicious lesions, and the technology part comes into play with our use of the ViziLite® system. This light-based, non-invasive device is designed to detect cellular changes at their earliest stages. Early detection of these cancers is key to successful treatment.
Please do not wait for troubling symptoms to present themselves. Call Innovative Dental Care at (402) 507-5805 to schedule your appointment at our office, conveniently located along the West Dodge Corridor. We’ll see you soon!