Your dentist may take dental x-rays if your are a new patient, have not been seen in a while, or are in for a follow-up visit after dental treatment. Below are the most common type of x-rays that would be taken and the reasons why:
• Bitewing x-rays help dentists look at bone levels between teeth, cavities between teeth, and the health of the bone between teeth.
• Periapical x-rays help dentists look at the root tips of teeth, the bone around teeth, abscesses, and other pathology.
• Complete Series is a combination of bitewing and periapical radiographs that shows all the teeth, roots and related areas of the jaws.
• Panoramic x-rays help visualize wisdom teeth, TMJ’s, major pathology in the jaws and sinuses, and help see areas of missing teeth.
• CT scans allow for 3D visualization of teeth, 3D bone evaluation, airway evaluation, treatment planning dental implant sites or orthodontics, and pathology.
Are Dental X-Rays Safe?
Yes, dental x-rays are safe. We are all exposed to natural radiation in our environment, and 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. Necessary precautions are taken to limit the patient’s exposure to radiation when taking dental x-rays by using a lead apron shield to protect the body and thyroid.
How Often Do I Need X-Rays?
The need for dental x-rays depends on each patient’s individual dental health needs. We 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 are taken at recall visits and are recommended once or twice a year to detect new dental problems.
Give our office a call at 203-692-4405. We look forward to speaking with you.