The world of dentistry is constantly evolving with new procedures being developed not just to keep your teeth free from cavities but also to make sure that you keep your bright, beautiful smile for all the years to come. So with the advent of braces and dental implants, there is also a need for newer diagnostic procedures that will allow your dentist to take a better look not just of your teeth but as well as the surrounding structures such as the jawbones. For that reason, dental x-rays were developed.
Types of Dental X-rays
When it comes to the different types of dental x-rays, there are two which are commonly ordered by dentists — the intraoral and the extra-oral dental x-rays. The intraoral x-rays are more requested of the two as they allow dentists to take a look at your teeth in order to find out if cavities have started to form. At the same time, intraoral x-rays enable dentists to take a look at your dental roots as well as the other structures which are close to your teeth. However, if your dentist needs to see the bigger picture of your entire mouth, then he or she would ask you to go for extra-oral x-rays. This type of x-ray will show not just your teeth but as well as your skull and jaws. In doing so, extra-oral x-rays show your teeth as it interacts with the structures that keep them in place, and can even reveal impacted teeth.
Precautions for Dental X-rays
The use of dental x-rays means bombarding your facial area with radiation that potentially cause certain diseases over time. However, you can reduce your exposure to radiation through these tips:
Ask the dentist to lower the x-ray dose.
Just like administering drugs, your dentist will choose an x-ray dose which will then be fired at you when you get your actual x-ray. The lower the dose, the lower your radiation exposure.
Ask the dentist to get a more efficient x-ray film.
The longer it takes for the x-ray image to develop, the longer you would have to be exposed to the radiation. However, an x-ray film with faster developing speed will lessen your need to be exposed to radiation.
Use of film holders.
Holding the film in front of your mouth would mean that your fingers would receive harmful radiation as well. But film holders ensure that only your facial area is hit and not the other parts of your body unnecessarily.
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