Oral Cancer Self-Examination
We do an oral cancer examination and screening for our Long Island dental patients at every dental examination visit. But you can also perform an oral cancer self-examination between your dental visits to check for any early signs of oral cancer. If you are concerned about any of your findings, call us immediately for an evaluation.
Oral Cancer Self-Examination Steps:
1. Press along the sides and front of your neck and feel for any tenderness or lumps. Do the same on your face. Your face and neck are symmetrical, so notice any bumps or swelling.
2. Pull your upper lip up and look for any sores and/or color changes on your lips and gums. Repeat this on your lower lip.
3. Use your fingers to pull out your cheek and look for any color changes such as red, white, or dark patches. Put your index finger on the inside and your thumb on the outside of your cheeks to feel for any lumps. Repeat on the other cheek.
4. Tilt your head back and open your mouth wide to see if there are any lumps or color changes.
5. Grab your tongue with a cotton gauze and examine for any swellings or color changes. Look at the top, back, and each side of your tongue.
6. Look at the underside of your tongue and the floor of your mouth (Touching the roof of your mouth with your tongue during this portion of the exam will allow you to see these areas better). See if there are any color changes or lumps. Using one finger inside your mouth and one finger on the outside (corresponding to the same place), feel for any unusual bumps, swelling, or tenderness.