Can I have dental treatment with a cold sore?
A cold sore is caused by a virus that activates from time to time. Cold sores are active when they look like a pimple or open ulcer but not active when scabbed over. Our office policy is to defer elective dental treatment during active stages, following guidelines created by the American Academy of Oral Medicine. We understand this may be an inconvenience to cancel an appointment, but the virus may worsen during dental treatment and put you at risk of bigger problems.
How common is oral cancer and do you check for it?
Oral or oropharyngeal (mouth and throat) cancer is the 7th most common form of cancer. It is more common in men than women and is associated with tobacco use. Once found, treatment can often be aggressive, involving removal of the tumor along with radiation and chemotherapy. Often sections of the jaw need removed and significant reconstructive surgery may be involved. Every time you are in our office for an exam or cleaning, we do an oral cancer screening, checking all areas of your mouth and visible part of your throat for anything out of the ordinary.