Just like X-rays help identify issues in other parts of your body, a dentist uses dental X-rays to uncover a variety of potential or current complications to your oral health. Instead of waiting for the problem to become overwhelmingly painful, complex, or expensive, your dentist can snap a few X-rays and soon uncover an appropriate diagnosis and plan of action. Without this incredible technology, patients would spend far more time and money attempting to repair highly damaged teeth and jaws. Here are some of the less visible issues X-rays can help discover before they become unbearable:

  • Tumors within the gums and jaw
  • Poor root positioning
  • Bone loss in teeth or jaw
  • Cysts and abscesses
  • Abnormal jaw or tooth development

Advantages of Filmless X-Rays

There are numerous benefits to digital X-rays that make it obvious as to why dentists today have embraced this method over the traditional ones. Traditional X-rays are known for using far more radiation through the use of X-ray film, while the digital variety uses an electronic sensor to complete the task. While both methods still require the mild use of radiation in order to see through body tissue, the contemporary filmless process uses far less to do so and helps limit a patient’s overall exposure to radiation over time.

Filmless X-rays also typically provide clearer results in faster amounts of time to help your dentist develop a health care plan immediately. These digital images are sharper and easier to manipulate. Plus, storage is a breeze compared to the old methods of storing physical files and prints.

Safety Considerations

Humans encounter various sources of low-level radiation on a daily basis. Sources including the sun, construction materials, smoke detectors, security systems, and more may all expose us to low levels of radiation. Luckily, filmless dental X-rays of today are even safer and less intensive than the older X-rays, and their level of exposure is comparable to the aforementioned sources.

When to Use X-Rays

Your dentist uses X-rays to see what his or her eyes cannot, and you may need to experience the process a number of times as you pursue stronger dental health. This number is determined by a variety of factors including the particular dental issue, the severity of the issue, your age, symptoms, and full medical history. Ultimately, taking digital X-rays is a painless and sometimes necessary process, and it is important for your dentist to evaluate these images to provide the best oral health care plan to meet your individual needs.

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