They employ low levels of radiation to capture images of the insides of your teeth, gums and surrounding bone structure.
Dental X-rays may seem complicated, but they’re common tools that are just as important as teeth cleanings.
Purpose of Dental X-Rays
Generally, dentists recommend for patients to have routine x-rays taken every two years.
These x-rays show the dentist area’s that can’t be seen by simply looking into your mouth such as the height of the supporting bone structure, any possible infections in the bone, cysts, abscesses and even some types of tumours.
They are an essential tool for dentists to use to enable them to see the overall health of your teeth and the surrounding tissues.
Factors affecting how often you get dental X-rays may include:
- your age
- your current oral health
- any symptoms of oral disease
- a history of gum disease or tooth decay
If you’re a new patient, you’ll probably undergo dental X-rays, particularly if you don’t have any X-rays from your previous dentist.
Types of X-rays
There are two types of dental x-rays that your dentist may take in the dental practice – the bite-wing x-ray and the periapical x-ray.
This technique involves biting down on a wing-shaped tab so that your dentist can identify how well the crowns of your teeth complement each other. This is often used to check for cavities between your back teeth and for any bone loss.
One bite-wing x-ray is generally taken on either side of your jaw and will show approximately eight teeth per x-ray (four on each the upper and lower jaws). This is generally the x-ray that your dentist will need to take about every two years as part of a thorough dental examination.
This technique concentrates on one or two complete teeth from the root to crown. Dentists will take a Periapical x-ray (also called a PA) if they have a concern regarding particular teeth; it is most helpful when a patient is experiencing a toothache as it can show any infection that may be occurring at the base of the tooth.
Sometimes your dentist may refer you to a radiologist (x-ray clinic) to have an Orthopantomogram, commonly known as an OPG, especially if you are having wisdom teeth problems. These are a full mouth x-ray, showing all teeth from ear to ear, and give the dentist a broader look at your teeth.
It is different from the smaller x-rays a dentist takes and shows less finer detail but is essential in checking areas such as the wisdom teeth, how a child’s jaw and teeth are developing and is used to check your jaw (Temporomandibular Joint/TMJ).
The Process for Taking a Dental X-rays
At Passion Family Dental, you’ll sit in the dental chair and the x-ray machine will be positioned near your head. The dentist will place a small x-ray plate/film in a special holder and position it in your mouth, you will be asked to bite down gently on the holder to keep the x-ray in place.
Your dentist will guide you through each step of the process.
Hold still while the pictures are recorded, don’t worry, this process takes only a matter of seconds. The dentist, and any family members you may have with you, will need to leave the room while the x-ray is being taken, to avoid unnecessary radiation.
After Dental X-rays
Your North Lakes dentist will review them and check for irregularities. If your dentist spots problems, such as cavities or tooth decay, they’ll discuss your treatment options and show you the images so you can see for yourself exactly what is happening.
These days the amount of radiation a patient receives via a dental x-ray is minimal. The average person is exposed to the same amount of radiation in a normal average day as they do to a dental x-ray. You receive more radiation on an aeroplane flight than you do from your dentist.
Dental X-rays at Passion Family Dental
At Passion Family Dental, we assure you of safe and effective dental and jaw care. We provide customised treatments tailored just for you!
Visit your North Lakes dentist today!
New Patient Professional Check-up, x-rays, clean and fluoride for only $178*
If you want to schedule an X-ray appointment with your North Lakes dentist, call us at (07) 3465 1199 to set an appointment. We are located at Unit 4/6 Endeavour Boulevard in North Lakes.