Besides examining the teeth and gums at Widner Elite Oral Surgery and Dental Implants, we also schedule screenings for oral cancer and assess lesions or unexplained bumps in the mouth. Therefore, you can get all your oral care needs met by visiting our office. The following information gives you further details about our oral pathology services as they relate to oral surgical care.
What Is Oral Pathology?
Oral pathology involves the study and diagnosis of conditions and diseases of the jaw, mouth, and face. This form of study falls under oral and maxillofacial care. Besides taking care of lesions, we also check abnormalities of the jaw and facial profile, and screen for oral cancer regularly.
In many cases, oral pathology entails looking at an oral lesion more closely. Therefore, we carefully review a patient’s medical history and look at the patient’s lifestyle. Does he or she smoke or drink alcohol? Do they chew tobacco?
What Is Included in an Oral Pathology Exam?
Usually, when an oral pathology exam is performed, we completely assess the head and neck and oral cavity. If a lesion has been discovered, we use imaging and photography to support a treatment plan. We also review this information to assess a patient’s oral surgical needs.
How Do You Use an Oral Pathology Assessment in a Treatment Plan?
By reviewing the oral pathology results, we can decide, for example, if a lesion may need monitoring or if we should obtain a biopsy for histopathological purposes. If a biopsy is necessary, we will take the specimen we obtained and send it to a lab for an evaluation. A pathologist will look at the specimen and provide us with a written summation, which includes a diagnosis. Based on this report, we can devise a treatment plan.
How Are Oral Pathologies/Lesions Treated?
Many oral pathologies we find are benign, and therefore require only basic intervention, or dental and medical management. One of the frequently posed questions that are asked involves the potential for a malignancy - in this case, oral cancer.
Once again, your risk of oral cancer increases if you use tobacco products or consume alcohol excessively. Certain viral infections can also lead to the disease. Researchers have discovered that the majority of oral cancers are related to the human papillomavirus (HPV) or human herpes viruses (HHVs).
What Are Some Examples of Abnormal Oral Pathologies and Diseases?
Besides lesions or bumps, an understanding of oral pathology can help us assess and treat a jaw misalignment, periodontal disease, oral ulcers, cleft palate, macroglossia (enlargement of the tongue), or a geographic tongue. A geographic tongue, for instance, describes a condition where the tongue’s tiny, hair-like projections, or papillae, are missing. This condition, which may result from emotional stress, a hormonal imbalance, or diabetes, can be treated by using an anesthetic mouthwash and taking an over-the-counter pain medicine.
As you can see, the field of dentistry goes beyond just the teeth and gums. That is why you can count on us for all your oral healthcare needs. If you have not had an oral exam in some time, now is the time to schedule one. Call Widner Elite Oral Surgery and Dental Implants at (737) 309-4351 to set an appointment today. If you have discovered a lesion or bump in your mouth, call us to have it examined now.