SYRACUSE, N.Y., April 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Aspen Dental (www.aspendent.com) is reminding patients about the importance of oral cancer screening and early detection in recognition of Oral, Head, and Neck Cancer Awareness Week, which runs from April 12-18, 2010. As part of its commitment to oral cancer detection, Aspen Dental will donate a portion of the proceeds for oral cancer screenings conducted during the week of April 12 to the Oral Cancer Foundation.
According to the Oral Cancer Foundation, more than 35,000 Americans are diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal cancer each year, and oral cancer is responsible for approximately 8,000 deaths annually. Oral cancer is often discovered late in its development, which means that the death rate is particularly high.
"Early detection is key, so regular dental care and oral cancer screenings are critically important," said Dr. Arwinder Judge, vice president of clinical support at Aspen Dental Management, Inc. "Oral cancer can be found anywhere in the mouth, or on your lips or tongue. It's important to identify any abnormalities as early as possible, when the cancer is most treatable."
Common risk factors for oral cancer include use of tobacco products (smoked and smokeless), excessive alcohol consumption, and HPV infection. According to the American Cancer Society, possible signs and symptoms of oral cancer include: a sore in the throat or mouth that bleeds easily and does not heal; a lump or thickening; ear pain; a neck mass; coughing up blood; a red or white patch that persists; and difficulties in chewing, swallowing, or moving the tongue or jaw (www.cancer.org/downloads/STT/500809web.pdf).
"People who are experiencing any of these symptoms and have risk factors for oral cancer should be screened as soon as possible," urges Dr. Judge.
In addition to conducting visual exams for oral cancer, Aspen Dental offers screening with Vizilite Plus®, a blue-light, "glowstick" technology to detect oral cancer. Aspen Dental will donate $5 from every Vizilite Plus screening conducted during Oral, Head, and Neck Cancer Awareness Week to the Oral Cancer Foundation.
Providing Access to Comprehensive Dental Care
Many patients do not visit the dentist regularly – according to a 2003 "National Call To Action To Promote Oral Health" by the U.S. Surgeon General, fewer than two-thirds of adults report having visited a dentist in the previous 12 months. Aspen Dental doctors are committed to providing patients with high-quality denture and dental care services, ranging from preventive care to general dentistry to restoration.
Dentists at Aspen Dental work to help break down the barriers that keep patients from getting the oral care they need. That's why Aspen Dental offers convenient locations, extended hours, affordable fees, a wide range of flexible payment plan options and works with all insurance plans.
Additionally, to help encourage patients to take the first step toward good oral health, Aspen Dental offers free new-patient exams to patients that do not have the benefit of insurance; free denture consultations for all denture patients; special promotions and senior discounts. Patients can learn about what to expect during their first visit to Aspen Dental at www.aspendent.com/appointment.first.visit.html.
Aspen Dental offices are open extended hours, including select Saturdays, and works with all insurance providers. Walk-in patients and those with emergencies are welcome.
To make an appointment, call 800-ASPEN DENTAL. As an added convenience, patients can visit www.aspendent.com and click "Make an Appointment" to schedule online.
About Aspen Dental
One of the largest and fastest-growing providers of denture and dental care services in the U.S., Aspen Dental practices are committed to providing patients with affordable, high-quality care under the Aspen Dental brand.
Aspen Dental has grown from 13 offices and three states in 1998 to more than 235 locations in 20 states. More than 350 licensed dentists and 200 dental hygienists work with Aspen Dental throughout Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington and Wisconsin.
In 2009, Aspen Dental recorded more than 1.5 million patient visits, including visits from more than 340,000 new patients.
Aspen Dental doctors and staff help meet the demand for high-quality, yet affordable denture and dental services by offering convenient retail locations, extended hours, affordable fees and a wide range of payment plan options. The offices work with all insurance plans.
SOURCE Aspen Dental