Benefits of Digital X-rays
Digital technology plays a vital role in the field of dentistry as it allows both dentist and hygienist to instantly capture an image that can be viewed immediately. They can easily enhance or enlarge the image to aid in diagnostics. Digital X-rays also reduce radiation as much as 90% compared to traditional X-rays.
Digital X-rays are essential tools for both dentists and hygienist, as they provide valuable information during a regular or emergency exam visit. These X-rays allow the dentist to accurately detect unseen abnormalities and therefore allow for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Dental X-rays can alert your Dentist to:
- Advanced gum disease (periodontal disease).
- Abscesses (infected tooth)
- Caries (tooth decay) that may develop in between or under restorations (fillings)
- Jaw tumors
- Impacted teeth or poor tooth position
- Developmental abnormalities (congenitally missing teeth)
Are dental X-rays safe?
During the day we are all exposed to natural radiation within our environment. By using digital radiographs we can significantly reduce the amount of exposure to our patients as well as eliminate potential waste into the environment. When X-rays are performed properly with adequate safety precautions in place such as a lead apron, there’s very little cause for concern. A routine examination with four bitewing X-rays exposes you to roughly the same amount of radiation you will experience during 1 to 2 hours on an airplane.
How often should Dental X-rays be taken?
Most patients need bitewing X-rays (cavity detecting) once a year to maintain oral health. Occasionally when there is active disease present and conditions we need to monitor closely we need them more frequently such as every 6 months. Panoramic X-rays, Periapical X-rays (shows teeth roots and bone close up) and photos should be taken at your routine recare visit every 5 years.