Oral Cancer Awareness Month

Oral screenings are essential to maintaining good oral health and are part of every exam at St. Croix Family Dentistry. During an oral screening, a dental professional will examine your mouth for signs of oral cancer or other issues that may impact your oral health.


The dental professionals at St. Croix Family Dentistry take your oral health seriously. Regular screenings and an awareness of the signs and symptoms of oral cancer can help protect yourself against this potentially deadly disease and help ensure your overall health.


The screening process, which a dentist or dental hygienist can perform, typically involves a physical examination of your mouth, gums, teeth, and tongue. In some cases, a biopsy may be required for further testing. Here’s what you can expect during an oral screening:

Patient History

A dental professional will ask you about your medical history, including any family history of cancer or other relevant factors, like tobacco or heavy alcohol use, that may increase your risk for oral cancer.

Visual Identification

The dental professional will start by visually inspecting your mouth for any signs of abnormalities, such as sores or lesions, dark spots, or soft bumps on the gum tissue. They will also look for signs of tooth decay and gum disease.


The dental professional will use their fingers to feel for any lumps, bumps, or other abnormalities in your mouth or neck. This process is known as palpation and can help identify any areas that require further examination.

Special Screening Devices

Sometimes, the dental professional may use special dye or lights to help detect oral cancer. These tools can help identify abnormalities that may not be visible to the naked eye.


If the dental professional identifies any issues during the screening, they will recommend appropriate treatment to help address the problem and prevent further damage. They may recommend a biopsy, which involves removing a small tissue sample from the affected area for further testing.

“It’s important to note that oral cancer can be difficult to detect in its early stages, which is why regular screenings are so important,” notes Dr. Frank Crain. “If you notice any changes in your mouth, such as sores that don’t heal, persistent pain or swelling, or difficulty swallowing or speaking, it’s important to see a dental professional as soon as possible.”

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We proudly Serve the Entire St. croix Valley!

We serve the entire St. Croix Valley, including St. Croix Falls, Taylors Falls, Osceola, Turtle Lake & Grantsburg areas. Our full service dental clinic can still ensure you have the best dental hygiene possible. New patients are always welcome, so come visit us today to discuss your options. You’ll see for yourself why patient satisfaction is so high. Our friendly staff are more than happy to help!

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