If you are visiting the dentist for the first time in a while, you may be wondering if dental x-rays are necessary, and if they’re safe. You’ve got questions, and the team at Consultants In Dental Aesthetics has the answers you need. Read on, and see why modern digital x-rays are safe, effective, and more powerful than ever!
Dental X-Rays Are Safe, Necessary, And Easier Than Ever!
First, let’s discuss the safety of x-rays. X-rays are extremely safe, and expose you to very little radiation. While you get your x-rays, your body will be fully protected with a special lead vest, which blocks the x-rays from reaching your organs.
The amount of radiation used by modern digital imaging is also extremely low, especially when compared to old-school film-based x-rays. A dental x-ray exposes you to about 2 or 3 mrem of radiation.
That may sound like a lot. But it’s a tiny amount! The average person is exposed to about 360 mrem of radiation each year, from sources like radioactive materials on earth, the food they eat, and radiation that enters the Earth’s atmosphere from outer space.
That’s not the only benefit, either. Digital x-ray technology is more precise than film-based x-rays, and the images taken by a digital x-ray machine are available right away. They can also easily be adjusted and altered with computer programs to provide even better diagnostic capabilities.
Why Would I Need To Get An X-Ray At The Dentist?
Broadly speaking, there are two different types of x-rays that you may need to get at the dentist. Let’s discuss them both now.
- Screening x-rays – Screening x-rays are done once per year as part of the routine preventive dentistry process. They’re called “screening” x-rays because they allow Dr. Landry to look for signs of common oral health issues, such as an infection below your gums, tooth decay, or a failing piece of dental work like a filling or crown.
- Diagnostic x-rays – Diagnostic x-rays are not used to look for oral health issues. Rather, they’re used to focus on a specific part of your mouth after an oral health problem is found, or after a specific procedure is recommended. They are only necessary if you have an oral health problem that needs to be addressed by the team at Consultants In Dental Aesthetics.
For example, if Dr. Landry notices that you have an infected tooth and it needs to be extracted, she may take diagnostic x-rays of the tooth to get a better view of the tooth and the location of the tooth in your mouth. Then, she can use this information to plan the extraction procedure and ensure the best possible results.
Both types of x-rays are important, and if Dr. Landry recommends that you have either a screening or diagnostic x-ray performed, you should follow her recommendation. As mentioned, x-rays are extremely safe and effective, and are a very valuable dental tool.
Always Get X-Rays When They’re Recommended – It Will Protect Your Oral Health!
Digital x-rays are a very powerful diagnostic tool, since they allow Dr. Landry to look deeply into your gums, teeth, jaw bone, and other structures of your face, and identify problems that may not be diagnosable with a physical oral exam alone.
So if we recommend an x-ray at Consultants In Dental Aesthetics, don’t worry. You will be safe from radiation, and your x-ray will ensure you get the best possible level of dental care in Spring, TX. Ready to get started? Contact us online or give us a call at (281) 370-8786. We’re always accepting new patients.