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Dental X-rays give a clear view beyond the teeth’s surface

Dental X-rays give a clear view beyond the teeth's surface

Find out underlying conditions ahead with Dental X-ray

Dental radiographs are known as Dental X-rays. An X-ray image results from a controlled barrage of x-ray radiation which passes through soft tissues. As the process goes, these are absorbed by dense tissues or bones. Dentists utilize Dental X-rays for many reasons but mainly for diagnostic and preventive. The latter pertains to identifying potential dental issues before they become a major problem in the patient’s mouth.

Given these known facts, dental experts use dental radiographs diagnostically to effectively identify issues that they cannot immediately recognize by the naked eye.

Without these X-rays, many dental problems could be unidentified until they get worse. However, with Dental X-rays, dentists become much more effective in diagnosing and possibly preventing dental health problems.

There are two main categories of Dental X-rays: intraoral and extraoral. Dental radiographs taken in the mouth is intraoral, whereas, extraoral is done outside the confines of the mouth. In dentistry, intraoral x-rays are more common than extraoral.

The gains of dental radiographs are undeniable. They aid dentists in diagnosing common dental health problems. These problems include gum disease, cavities, and different types of infections.

Dental X-rays allow dental professionals to see our teeth’s internal features, underneath gums, and even the condition of the bones and supporting tissues holding our teeth in place.

Despite our fear of the word “radiation,” Dental X-rays are safe for you and your child as it uses minimal amount of radiation. However, pregnant women should inform the dentist of their condition. This should also be the case even if a woman only suspects that she is pregnant. When the patient meets the standard safety precautions, modern Dental X-rays allow dentists to focus the X-ray on a specific area or part of the mouth without unnecessary radiation affecting other zones. In addition, a thyroid collar may be used for patients with thyroid issues.

The frequency of getting Dental radiographs depends on your dental and medical history plus your present condition.

New patients are recommended to undergo Dental X-rays to assess their oral health’s current state or status. Children may require more frequent X-rays because of their still-developing bones and teeth.

Just as brushing and flossing regularly, getting a Dental X-ray is an important aspect of your general oral health.

It does not have to be as regular as having your teeth cleaned by your dentist but should be observed once it is recommended. Make sure to commit to your oral health as firmly as you do with your overall health, fitness, and lifestyle.


What are the different types of X-rays?

Generally, there are two main categories of Dental Radiographs: Intraoral and Extraoral.

Intraoral Radiographs:

Bite-wing X-rays – This shows the upper and lower molars and bicuspids. This helps the dentist locate decay between back teeth.

Periapical X-rays – Similar to Bite-wing but it shows the entire tooth from crown to root.

Occlusal X-rays – This shows almost the entire arch of teeth (upper or lower jaw). Larger than most common dental radiographs, it highlights dental development and placement in children.

Extraoral Radiographs:

Panoramic X-rays – present the entire mouth in one X-ray. It includes all teeth on upper and lower jaws. This Dental Radiograph requires a special machine to capture the full panoramic view of your mouth and jaw. More often, this uses less radiation than intraoral X-rays.

Cephalometric Projections – show one entire side of the head. This type highlights the teeth relative to the jaw and profile of the patient. Orthodontists use this radiograph to figure out the best type of orthodontic treatment to do.

Cone-beam Computed Tomography – A type of radiograph that displays 3D images of dental structures, bone, soft tissue, and nerves. This is best used for dental implant selection and placement.

Dental Computed Tomography – A type of imaging that features the interior structures in 3D. With this piece of technology, dental experts use this to find possible cysts, tumors, fractures, and other issues in the bones.

Dental X-rays use Digital Radiographs in one of its recent techniques.

When used properly, this X-ray method uses around only half the radiation of a standard film. With this, your dentist positions a conventional X-ray film with a flat electronic sensor or pad. Then, the resulting image goes into a computer, where your dentist projects it on a screen, stored, and prints it out.

What problems can dental X-rays detect?

In children:

  • Monitor decay
  • Check if there is sufficient space I their mouth for incoming teeth
  • Check if baby teeth are being expended timely enough for permanent teeth to fill in
  • Monitor development of wisdom teeth
  • Check for possible developmental abnormalities in the mouth, like, cysts and types of tumors.

In adults:

  • Indicate areas of decay not readily seen
  • Spot decay beneath an existing filling
  • Detect bone loss that goes with gum disease
  • Detect bone irregularities or in the root canal as a result from infection
  • Aid in preparation for dentures, braces, tooth implants, or other dental procedures
  • Identify an abscess

How does one prepare for a Dental X-ray?

Dental radiographs do not require special preparation at all. Save for brushing your teeth prior to your dentist appointment, there is no other special activity to observe.

What happens after the dental X-ray?

As soon as the image/s is/are ready, your dentist will review them closely and inspect for anomalies or any abnormalities that need to be addressed. Afterwards, he will discuss the details with you before moving forward with any procedure.

What Does Des Moines Dental Group Say About Dental X rays?

Some people are lucky to have perfect white teeth. Some are not so fortunate. With the advent of innovative technology, your dental experts can easily detect dental problems. Dental X-rays are one of these many innovations. With Dental X-rays, dentists can examine the teeth thoroughly and act on the necessary corrections to preserve dental health. There is no one who can give you advice better than your dental health experts. Get expert advice and insights on Dental X-rays from the best in Iowa. Visit our Urbandale clinic or get an appointment at 2333 McKinley Ave Des Moines, IA 50321. Got any questions about oral health habits or need any help with what you have? Visit www.dmdentalgroup.com or call us at 515-512-5377 or 515-512-5339.

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