Oral Cancer Screenings in Peoria, IL

Oral cancer is a serious disease that affects thousands of people every year. Like most cancers, when it is caught in its earliest stages, it can often be cured. You can beat the odds by seeing your dentist regularly.

Oral Cancer Basics

Oral cancer is a malignancy that forms in tissues located within the oral cavity, including the inner cheek, lips, gums, and tongue. The cancer can originate in these tissues or spread to them from somewhere else. If you’re a smoker, heavy drinker, or sun worshiper, you may be at increased risk. Other risk factors include advanced age and exposure to the human papilloma virus.

Common Signs of Oral Cancer

The following signs of oral cancer may be visible inside your mouth:

  • Swelling or other changes
  • Lumps or coarse-textured skin
  • Smooth red or white patches
  • Persistent sores that won’t heal
  • Unusual bleeding

Other Oral Cancer Symptoms

Other oral cancer tongue, lip, and mouth symptoms include the following:

  • Mouth pain
  • Numbness or unusual sensations
  • Unexplained sore throat
  • Sensation of a foreign object in your throat
  • Difficulty chewing, talking, or swallowing
  • Problems using your tongue or moving your lips
  • Voice changes
  • Ear pain
  • New or worsening bite or denture problems

What Are the Oral Cancer Stages?

Oral cancer can be classified by stages to help determine how large the lesion is and how far it has spread. If you have stage I or stage II oral cancer, your lesion is likely relatively small and remains localized. Stages III and IV involve larger lesions that may have spread into your lymph nodes or other parts of your body. Your doctor can determine the stage and prognosis of your cancer from a biopsy.

Is the Oral Cancer Screening Process Expensive?

Unlike some forms of cancer testing, oral cancer screening is usually free. It’s often an automatic addition to your routine dental exam. If you have an unusually high risk of oral cancer, you may want to see your dentist more often. All of our experienced dentists perform cancer screening as part of your routine dental examination. Call us today to schedule your next appointment.

How Is Oral Cancer Detected?

Detecting oral cancer can be accomplished in several ways. Your dentist will usually start with a visual evaluation of your mouth and a manual exam to feel for lumps or thickened areas of tissue. He or she may also use oral cancer detection tools such as special lighted instruments or dyes that detect abnormal tissue. If an area looks suspicious, your dentist may also perform a brush test or a biopsy to confirm or rule out malignancy.

What Is the Oral Cancer Survival Rate?

The overall oral cancer survival rate is 60 percent, but every case is different, and prognosis depends on a wide variety of factors. Unfortunately, many cases are in the advanced stages by the time they’re detected. Since your dentist can identify cancer at an earlier stage when it is most treatable and curable, it’s important to keep your dental appointments, even if you don’t have any alarming symptoms.

How Is Oral Cancer Treated?

Oral cancer treatment options include surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation. The later oral cancer is detected, the more intensive and aggressive the treatment becomes. To protect your health, schedule your oral cancer screening in Peoria today. Our compassionate and thorough dental professionals can provide peace of mind and a healthier smile.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
Friendly. No wait – well organized office. Excellent care. Trustworthy.
Allie D.
Jessica was great with my 11 year old; she was patient and kind! Great job!
Lincoln D.
Dr Ruffner is a great dentist who cares about his patients
Lynn G.
I know the staff and they are super nice! They make you feel at ease. WE LOVE Dr Ruffner!
Makayla B.
Friendly people, great service provided and I always leave with a smile!
Dana B.
The extra care that is given to me to make sure I’m comfortable is worth the world to me.
Jeffrey C.
Very friendly and professional staff. Karen is the best!!
William M.
The staff is very friendly, patient , and I wouldn’t change my dentist for anything! I look forward to getting my teeth cleaned !
#5
Such a nice an friendly atmosphere.
Carrie M.
I am very happy with all aspects of my visits there…..from the first person I speak to when I arrive to the last one I am in contact with when I leave….except for the fact that I have to […]
Diane F.
Dr. Ruffner and his assistant today were very understanding and made the visit and repair work as pleasant as could be. I got in right away the same day I called.
Cathy W.
A very good experience. The care given was top notch by the professional and friendly staff at Illini drive. Yes, I would recommend them!
Norman W.
Doctor Ruffner is amazing! He really cares about his patients and about the work he does. He knows I have terrible anxiety but he still wipes the tears away when I’m having a hard time. I […]
Sara L.
Good professional cleaning without any pain. Hygienist consistently checked to make sure everything was OK.
Theodore S.
Always excellent service from the entire staff!
John M.
Very quick, friendly, wonderful service.
Ryan D.
Wendy is a very good dental hygienist
Eric S.
Dental hygienists are very professional! Wendy is incredible with my kids!
Mary R.
The staff is very friendly, patient , and I wouldn’t change my dentist for anything! I look forward to getting my teeth cleaned !
#5
Friendly and awesome staff. I am always satisfied with my treatment/cleaning. Highly recommended dental office!
Babette R.
Find a Location
Near You
Healthcare Financing with
CareCredit
We Accept Most Insurance Plans!
Learn More

We accept most insurance plans and will be happy to help you understand the coverage that you have. We will do our best to see that you receive your maximum insurance benefits for all covered services.

No Insurance? No Worries! See our discounts and offers here