Worcestershire Community Dental Team Carries Out More Than 130 Mouth Cancer Checks in November

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The community dental service from Worcestershire Health and Care Trust completed 136 mouth cancer checks in November. The team visited community hospitals all over the county during the month as part of Mouth Cancer Awareness Month.

Members of the team travelled to local hospitals to offer mouth cancer screening and provide patients with information about the symptoms and signs of mouth cancer. The initiative was part of a national campaign to raise awareness of mouth cancer throughout November, which was run by the British Dental Health Foundation.

One patient was found to have suspicious symptoms and they were sent for further checks at the head and neck service. A handful of others were advised to have regular screening checks to keep tabs on potentially minor signs.

Alison Wills, dental health coordinator at the trust, said that the team was pleased that so many people had taken advantage of free screening. Some of the patients have been advised to have further tests and without screening, these warning signs could have gone undetected for a long period of time. The aim of screening is to save lives and if the team has managed to save even a single life, this is excellent news.

The team received very positive feedback from patients, and dentists and nurses are working to continue to raise awareness of mouth cancer and encourage people to learn about the causes and symptoms. The number of people affected by this form of cancer has increased by almost 50 per cent in the last ten years alone and 2,000 people die from the disease in the UK every year. With early detection, this number could fall significantly.

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