X-rays can help your Cedar Park dentist detect problems with teeth and gums that are not visible during a periodic checkup and help you avoid potential complications before they start. Broadly speaking there are two types:
Intraoral x-rays, which are taken inside the mouth, show the condition of your teeth, roots, and overall composition of your jaw and facial bones.
Extraoral x-rays are taken outside of the mouth and can show the exact location of impacted teeth, irregularities in the facial bones or jaw, and teeth that have not yet completely developed.
When do I need X-rays?
Usually taken once a year, bitewing x-rays show details of the upper and lower teeth on the right and left of the mouth. They can help your dentist in Cedar Park detect decay between teeth, determine the proper fit of a crown or detect breakdown of fillings. Bitewings may also show evidence of bone loss, gum disease and infection.
Periapical x-rays are often taken when a patient comes in with pain, infection, or other problems with a specific tooth. They show your whole tooth–from the crown to beneath the root where your tooth attaches to your jaw, and can detect any unusual changes in your tooth’s root and surrounding bone structures.
Full mouth x-rays are a complete series of intraoral x-rays that are often required for submission of insurance claims for periodontal treatment such as a scaling and root planing.
A panoramic x-ray is extraoral, and captures the entire mouth in a single image. It includes all the teeth in both the upper and lower jaws, and surrounding bone and tissue. This x-ray shows the position of fully emerged and emerging teeth, and can help to predict children’s tooth development. It may show complications such as impacted wisdom teeth. A panoramic x-ray can also detect irregularities such as tumors in the jaw or skull, which cannot be seen on intraoral x-rays.
What about radiation exposure?
According to the ADA, dental X-rays are safe and require very low levels of radiation exposure, which makes the risk of potentially harmful effects very small. Pregnant women should speak with their dentist before getting x-rays.
Our dentist in Cedar Park is committed to providing quality care that will help you improve your dental health and keep you smiling. Contact the team at Reveal Dental at (512) 337-2316 to schedule an appointment today.