Oral Care Plays a Part in Cancer Treatment

Did you know that your dentist is responsible for more than making sure your teeth are healthy? During your regular checkups your dentist also checks for overall oral health and looks for early signs of oral cancer.

Cancer, the dreaded “C” word. To many people the word may bring to mind thoughts of lung cancer or breast cancer because people are often not aware of oral cancer. In fact it is estimated that 4700 Canadians will be diagnosed with oral cavity cancer in 2017.

As with all cancers, early detection of oral cancer is key to successful diagnosis and treatment. Something else to be aware of is that poor oral health has also been found to affect a patient’s response to treatment for other types of cancer. Doctors are starting to recommend that patients get a professional dental cleaning and checkup before starting chemotherapy to make sure there are no abscesses present. Emergency extractions during cancer treatment reduce your healing ability and this is no time for that to happen.

Your dentist can play a role in your post-cancer treatment regime as well. Cancer fighting therapies can weaken your teeth and cause tooth decay. Your body’s ability to produce saliva may be impeded, making your teeth more susceptible to damage by acidic foods because the natural flushing action of the saliva is missing or greatly reduced.

If your dry mouth results in a cavity or inflamed gums the resulting bacterial infection in your mouth can grow out of control and travel throughout your body, adding yet another stress you do not need at this time.

Dr. Babin can recommend procedures and products specific to your situation and designed to help you come out the other side of cancer therapy with your white smile and oral health intact. Let Babin Dentistry be part of your cancer fighting team! Contact Babin Dentistry for your free consultation.