During your regular dental visit, have you ever wondered why x-rays may be necessary? The best way to keep patients informed about their oral health is to explain how and why x-rays are used in dentistry.
Why Are X-Rays Necessary At The Dentist? What You Need To Know
All people have had dental X-rays at some point, whether as part of a routine dental visit or to determine if something is wrong with their teeth. What is the purpose of dental X-rays and why are they such an important diagnostic and preventative tool?
X-rays Allow Dentists To Look Below The Surface Of The Teeth
High-energy electromagnetic radiation is used to create X-ray images. Radiation cannot penetrate through soft, low-density tissues like our skin or organs.
The x-ray radiation can, however, be absorbed by denser and harder material in the human body, such as bones and teeth. The absorption of light can be measured and converted into an image using special film or digital sensors.
Dentists need x-rays for this reason. Your dentist can see into the deeper areas of your teeth and jaw bone, past the tissues within your mouth, such as your gums. A dental examination can detect signs of oral health issues that may be invisible to the naked eye.
What is the Procedure for X-Rays?
What should you expect when getting dental x-rays? The process is very simple:
- Dental X-rays are taken while you are sitting up straight in your chair.
- A dental technician will wrap a thyroid collar around your neck and place a lead apron over your chest.
- In order to take the picture, the X-ray sensor will be placed in your mouth.
In most cases, there is no discomfort or pain associated with X-rays. How comfortable or uncomfortable you feel will depend on how large and where the sensors are placed. It is also important to consider your mouth size since a small mouth makes it difficult to place the sensor correctly. There shouldn’t be any pain associated with X-rays, only a little discomfort.
Should I get a dental X-ray every year?
In short, no. Dentists used to recommend yearly x-rays. However, today the ADA (American Dental Association) recommends getting x-rays only about every two to three years for healthy adults without obvious dental problems.
Your dentist will only need to take x-rays every once in a while if your mouth is healthy and free of problems such as gum disease and tooth decay. You may need to have your mouth x-rayed more frequently if you have oral health problems.
Visit Divine Dental for routine dental care, oral examinations & x-rays
Do you need a dental checkup soon? Let Dr. Shayan Hedayati, our lead dentist, take care of your entire dental care needs. Divine Dental provides North Vancouver residents with teeth cleaning, oral exams, and x-rays so they can stay in control of their dental health. Call (604) 987-7272 today to schedule an appointment, or contact us on our website.