Facts about Dental X-Rays
If you treasure your dental health and go to your Sterling Heights dentist’s office regularly, chances are high you have had dental X-rays taken from time to time. This article discusses the facts about dental X-rays that you need to know.
What Are Dental X-Rays?
Dental X-rays are 2D images taken of your oral structures in order to make it easy for your dentist in Sterling Heights to assess your oral health and design an appropriate treatment plan in case any adverse condition is detected.
Dental X-rays may be digital or film images. Digital dental X-rays are newer, faster and safer than film X-rays. This reduces any risks that you may be exposed to as you undergo the diagnostic imaging procedure.
Types of Dental X-Rays
Intraoral X-Rays. Intra means “within or inside”. Intraoral dental X-rays are therefore X-rays that are taken from inside the oral cavity. These images allow the dentist to take a close look at the different structures within your mouth, such as the roots of your teeth, the supporting bone mass and any cavities developing in your mouth.
Extraoral X-Rays. These are taken from outside the mouth. Extraoral X-rays are used to look at the bigger picture of your oral health. For example, your Sterling Heights dentist may need an extraoral X-ray in order to find out whether you sustained any fractures to your jaws during an auto accident. The X-rays may also be used to assess the alignment of your jawbones with the bones in the skull.
How Often Can One Have Dental X-Rays?
X-rays carry a risk of exposure to radiation. For that reason, most dentists in Sterling Heights will limit how often they ask you to undergo dental X-rays.
However, you will usually be asked to have routine dental X-rays done once each year to monitor your dental health and address any issues that develop.
Other dental X-rays will be ordered based on the challenges you are facing. Remember, X-rays are a diagnostic tool that will only be ordered by your Sterling Heights dentist when needed.
Shreveport’s dentist Dr. Ben Kacos agrees that people who are switching from one primary dental care provider to another should give the new dentist the recent dental X-rays taken by the previous dentist in order to avoid having to repeat the imaging process so soon after other images were taken.
What Safety Measures Are Taken During the Process?
Sterling Heights dentists and radiologists take several precautions to limit your exposure to potentially harmful radiation.
First, they drape you in a leaded apron to protect your lower body from radiation. A leaded thyroid collar protects your thyroid gland from radiation.
The dentist will also limit how long the imaging process takes so that your teeth are exposed to the lowest level of radiation possible. As mentioned earlier, digital X-ray equipment emits about 80% less radiation than the traditional X-ray machines.
It is important that you notify your Sterling Heights dentist if you are pregnant so that he or she can take any extra precautions necessary or even postpone the imaging procedure in case it isn’t urgently needed.
As you can see, the facts about dental X-rays speak for themselves. Don’t be misled by the misconceptions that abound about this diagnostic tool. Speak to a dentist in Sterling Heights about your concerns so that you can be given the right information. After all, good dental care starts with you and your dentist having the right information about what is going on in your mouth.