In order for dentists to provide the best possible care to their patients and prevent harmful complications from arising, they will often require a more in-depth look. While dentists routinely provide visual examinations, it does not provide them with all of the information they require to make a diagnosis and accurately treat any underlying problems. With the help of a dental x-ray, dentists will be able to take interventions to treat conditions before they become more severe.
X-rays, also known as radiographs will provide your dentist with the ability to see not only between your teeth but inside them as well. The tip of your roots and the bone underneath the gums can also be seen. These images can provide pertinent information that may not be seen with a routine visual exam. Any specific or isolated dental issues that you may be dealing with can be seen in a deeper way with a dental x-ray.
Radiographs are typically utilized for the sake of looking for cavities and studying the extent of any decay your teeth may have. According to the Academy of General Dentistry, the presence of cysts, abscesses,
The most common dental x-rays used in practices are bitewings, periapical and panoramic radiographs. During a routine exam, your dentist may take around two to four bitewing x-rays (display the crown portions of your teeth). This is for the purpose of checking for early signs of decay. Periapical x-rays provide the best view of your teeth’s bone height or root tips. Panoramic x-rays are taken from outside of your mouth and the image of the entire oral cavity can be seen on one large x-ray. Due to this, tumors, impaction, and jaw disorders can be observed. Not only are the teeth shown in the images, but your upper and lower jaws can be observed as well.
Because x-ray machines and other sources of radiographs are designed to minimize the amount of radiation, these processes are safe and you will not have to worry about being exposed. In fact, many offices utilize digital x-rays which reduce radiation exposure even more. Despite all of the safeguards in place, it is still recommended for patients to have leaded aprons cover their abdominal area and a leaded collar so the thyroid is not exposed. You should also make sure your dentist knows whether or not you are breastfeeding or pregnant.
For the sake of your dental health, brushing your teeth thoroughly with fluoride toothpaste and flossing will reduce your chances of having something negative show up on the x-rays. If you have further questions or concerns about your oral health, visit the professional office at North View Dental, where they will help with your concerns with the utmost care.