Your dentist will take routine X-rays of the teeth and jaw, so they can see an image showing the inside of the teeth and surrounding bone.
What do dental x-rays detect?
X-rays can be used to:
- Show areas of decay that may not be visible with an oral examination, especially small areas of decay between teeth
- Identify decay occurring beneath an existing filling
- Reveal bone loss that accompanies gum disease
- Reveal changes in the bone or in the root canal resulting from infection
- Assist in the preparation of tooth implants, braces, dentures or other dental procedures
- Reveal abscesses (an infection at the root of a tooth or between the gum and a tooth)
- Reveal other developmental abnormalities, such as cysts and some types of tumors
- Determine if there is enough space in the mouth to fit all incoming teeth
- Determine if primary teeth are being lost quickly enough to allow permanent teeth to erupt properly
- Check for the development of wisdom teeth and identify if the teeth are impacted (unable to emerge through the gums)
How often should someone have an X-ray?
Some people may need X-rays as often as every six months; others with no recent dental or gum disease and who visit their dentist regularly may get a few check up x-rays annually.
Patients who are new to a dental practice will probably have X-rays taken to check the state of teeth, any fillings or other dental work and other hidden problems.
X-rays are usually recommended by dentists every 6 to 12 months depending on the person, their history of tooth decay, age and the condition of their mouth.
People who fall into the high-risk category who may need X-rays taken more frequently include smokers, those with gum disease and oral health conditions such as dry mouth.
Why does Dr. Goehring use digital x-rays?
- SAFER: Reduces radiation by up to 90% compared to traditional film-based X-rays.
- FASTER: producing images that can be viewed immediately by you and Dr. Goehring. To make them even easier to see, we’ll enlarge them on a large monitor and lighten or darken them for best viewing.
- BETTER: provides more diagnostic information that enables Dr. Goehring to identify problem areas earlier. Detecting a cavity sooner and smaller than before means we can fix it earlier, before it seriously weakens your tooth.
- EASIER: with images stored on the computer that can be quickly duplicated for insurance company claims and other records.