COAL TOWNSHIP - Is a killer hiding right under your nose? Relay for Life will be holding an oral cancer screening during its Shamokin area event from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 3 to 7 p.m. Friday, June 13, at Kemp Memorial Stadium, 2000 W. State St. The screening is sponsored by Owens Dentistry in Shamokin.

Each year in the U.S. alone, approximately 42,000 individuals are newly diagnosed with oral cancer. Most are found as late stage cancers, which accounts for the very high death rate; about half those diagnosed will not survive more than five years. The good news is that a dentist or doctor can see or feel the precancerous tissue changes or an early-stage cancer, finding it at the most curable stages.

The examination takes 3 minutes. Studies show that HPV16, a sexually-transferred virus, is the leading cause of oral cancer in the U.S. Now, the fastest-growing segment of oral cancer patients are young, healthy, nonsmoking individuals. This is why everyone over the age of 18 should be screened annually. The visual exam is simple, painless and quick. Early detection saves lives.