Cleanings & Prevention
Dental radiographs (x-rays) are essential and preventative, diagnostic tools that can provide valuable information not visible during a regular dental exam. Dentists and dental hygienists use x-rays to safely and accurately detect hidden dental abnormalities and complete an accurate treatment plan.
Dental x-rays may reveal:
Abscesses or cysts
Cancerous and non-cancerous tumors
Decay between the teeth
Poor tooth and root positions
Problems inside a tooth or below the gum line
Detecting and treating dental problems at an early stage can save you time, money, unnecessary discomfort and your teeth!
Are dental x-rays safe?
The amount of radiation exposure from a full mouth series of x-rays is equal to the amount a person receives in a single day from natural sources.
Dental x-rays produce a low level of radiation and are considered safe. We take necessary precautions to limit the patient’s exposure to radiation when taking dental x-rays. These precautions include using lead apron shields to protect the body and using modern, fast film that cuts down the exposure time of each x-ray.
How often should dental x-rays be taken?
The need for dental x-rays depends on each patient’s individual dental health needs. Your dentist and dental hygienist will recommend necessary x-rays based on the review of your medical and dental history, dental exam, signs and symptoms, age consideration and risk for disease.
A full mouth series of dental x-rays is recommended for new patients. A full series is usually good for three to five years. Bite-wing x-rays (x-rays of top and bottom teeth biting together) are taken at recall (check-up) visits and are recommended once or twice a year to detect new dental problems.