Our patients sometimes ask us how often they should have dental x-rays, and we think this is a great question. So let’s answer some of the most frequently asked questions regarding x-rays – to set your mind at ease about their safety, and why we use them.
Why do I need dental x-rays?
It may seem that a dentist should be able to see all of the issues your teeth might have with a simple dental check-up. However, there are many dental and oral health conditions we cannot see without the use of x-rays.
X-rays help us to determine if you have any of the following issues:
• Small cavities between the teeth that can worsen over time
• Cavities hidden by an existing filling
• Periodontal Disease
• Infection in the bone
When should x-rays be taken?
It is not uncommon for a new dentist to take a full series of x-rays at your first appointment. We do this to have a clear record of your current oral and dental health. We can also use this to foresee potential issues as well as to act as a guide to compare against future x-rays.
How often do I need a dental x-ray?
Once we take the initial x-rays your overall dental health will determine how often you require x-rays. If you have serious issues such as decay or periodontal disease you may require them as often as every six months. Those with healthier teeth and gums can go as long as two years between x-rays if they do not develop any symptoms of problems.
Will I be exposed to dangerous radiation?
We use special dental x-ray tools that limit your exposure to radiation. Digital imaging also makes it much safer. The American Dental Association has strict rules about the equipment we can use which means exposure is As Low As Reasonably Achievable (the ALARA principle).
We also provide a lead apron and thyroid collar for protection. You are very safe with this protection and the proper safe x-ray equipment we use.
Can I have dental x-rays if I am pregnant?
You should always let us know if you are pregnant. If you do require dental x-rays due to dental disease, both you and your baby will be safe with the use of the lead apron and thyroid protection collar.
If you have any questions about dental x-rays our friendly team is here to help.
Call us today at 817.737.6601 or email us for further information.