As we become increasingly aware of the effects our environment has on us, the need for routine dental x-rays has come into question by many patients. If your teeth don't hurt, why expose yourself to unnecessary radiation?
The fact is that routine dental x-rays are an integral part of your oral health history. Even the most comprehensive visual exam can't tell your dentist everything they need to know to provide the treatment you need. That's because a lot of what goes wrong with your teeth starts on the inside, which is impossible to see without an x-ray.
Frequency of Dental X-Rays
How often your x-rays are taken is for your dentist to decide and is based on your current medical and dental condition. The American Dental Association recommends x-rays as follows:
Bitewing X-Rays - These are images we take of your upper and lower back teeth in four x-rays, two for each side. Bitewings are recommended every six to 12 months, depending on the current condition of your teeth.
Full Mouth X-Rays - For those with a history of good oral health, full mouth x-rays are recommended every three years.
Diagnostic X-Rays - If you suddenly experience tooth pain between routine x-rays, your dentist will probably need to take diagnostic x-rays to get a look inside your tooth to identify the source of the problem and plan appropriate treatment.
At Bethlehem Town Family Dental, we take the safety of our patients very seriously and will never recommend an x-ray unless it's needed as part of your ongoing oral health care. We also use digital imaging technology that minimizes your radiation exposure by about 90 percent when compared to film x-rays.
Call for Your Next Appointment
Glenmont dentist Dr. Henry Huang performs comprehensive exams and is conservative with the number of x-rays he takes. If it's been a while since you've had an x-ray or have questions, please call our office to arrange your next appointment.