According to a new study in the oral cancer field, more and more patients are asking for mouth cancer checkups in the dental offices.
As many as 88% of dental patients want to have their mouth checked for possible signs that indicate cancerous complications.
However, it has also been reported that only as little as 14% of dental patients say that their dentist has informed them about the symptoms and risks of oral cancer disease.
Even though 90% of the dentists check their patient’s mouth for possible oral cancer signs, very few of them actually discuss this particular issue with their patients directly.
The fact that dentists do not discuss openly this issue with their patients is a clear proof of a lack of communication between patient and dentist.
This particular survey has been run through the Mouth Cancer Action Month and those who wanted to participate were calling the National Dental Help Line of the Foundation. The survey was led by dental professionals, and there were more than 250 members who agreed to take part in the study.
According to Dr. Nigel Carter who is the chief executive of the Foundation, it is extremely important to bring patient and dentist much closer, where the dentists need to take up a more active role in discussing openly about the oral cancer issues.
Good communication between doctor and patient is extremely important in healthcare. If failure of communication settles in, that might result in several complications for the patient.
Dr. Carter attracts the attention that two of the leading factors that play a role in the development of mouth cancer are smoking and alcohol consumption. He also considers that the dentist is the one who should clearly explain the patient all the symptoms, sings and possible risk factors that might bring about the disease. This way, people will be able to make healthier lifestyle choices.
If patients are aware of the risks, and if they are able to recognize any problem by self-examination, the problem is caught early and then there are plenty of solutions available. Early detection of mouth cancer improves survival rates with as much as 90%.
Several decades ago a dentist was diagnosing with oral cancer one patient at every ten years. Today, dentists put up with an increased number of patients whom they have to tell that they struggle with a life threatening disease. It cannot be stressed enough that early detection of the disease is vital, because it literally saves lives.