Mesa, AZ -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/21/2012 -- According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, someone dies from oral cancer every hour. In addition, almost 37,000 people in the United States will be diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer this year. The survival rate for oral cancer is quite slim—just slightly more than half of the people with this type of cancer live for more than five years past their diagnosis.
The reason the mortality rate is so high is because oral cancer is typically only found in its later stages, when it has already become difficult to treat.
Dr. Eric Kerbs, a Mesa dentist who practices at Red Mountain Family Dental, is familiar with these sobering statistics. He also knows that getting regular dental checkups offer a chance for a dentist to look for signs of oral cancer in his or her patients. Since early detection can save lives, it is particularly important to go to the dentist twice a year.
In an effort to encourage people to see their dentists more regularly, Kerbs has written an article called “Why Go to the Dentist?” In it, Kerbs explains why seeing the dentist regularly is an important element is staying physically healthy. So many other issues have been connected to deteriorating dental health, he noted, that by not going to the dentist, people are literally risking their entire well being.
In addition to checking for oral cancer, regular checkups are a great way to reduce the likelihood of dental emergencies.
“When you see your dentist at least once every six months, it’s much easier for the doctor to detect problems and correct them before they turn into emergencies,” he noted, adding that it’s far easier on the patient’s comfort level and pocketbook to deal with issues at the onset, rather than later on when treatments become more complex and expensive.
During the dental exam, dentists can also discover early signs of cavities, Kerbs said.
“Tooth decay, also called dental caries or cavities, is caused by acid-forming bacteria that dissolve the enamel of your teeth, causing holes and dark spots,” noted.
“If not treated in the early stages, decay will eventually reach the nerve and the bacteria will infect the interior tissues. Gum disease, lack of consistent oral hygiene, and poor diets can increase the risks of getting cavities.”
The earlier decay is discovered and treated, Kerbs said, the less likely that a patient will need need root canal therapy or extraction.
For people who are concerned that their less-than stellar flossing habits may earn them a stern reminder at Red Mountain Dental, Kerbs wrote that the dental professionals in his office are caring and compassionate people who do not judge dental problems or deliver lectures. They are only there, he noted, to give each and every patient the best dental care in the East Valley.
About Red Mountain Family Dental
The dentists who are part of Red Mountain Family Dental specialize in providing family, preventive, cosmetic, restorative dentistry and more to Arizona families who live in or near the Valley. The staff implements modern technology and contemporary clinical techniques to create an efficient, comfortable, and rewarding dental visit for every patient in its care. The office takes a “whole mouth approach” to dental care. For more information, please visit http://www.myredmountainfamilydental.com