I have always been one of those people who loves to get out into the world and talk with other people, but a few years ago, I realized that I had to do something about my smile. My teeth were yellow and unattractive, and it was really discouraging to see how much different my smile was. I knew that I needed to get my teeth fixed, so I started working with a professional dentist to make things right. Within a few short months, my smile was completely transformed, and I knew that I owed it all to my dental professional. Check out this blog for more information about working with a dentist.
Does your child need dental X-rays? If you've already scheduled a routine cleaning and exam at the dentist's office, but you're not sure if X-rays are part of your next check-up, then take a look at what parents need to know about dental X-rays and your childhood mouth's health.
What Are Dental X-Rays?
These images provide the dentist with a picture of the inside parts of the teeth and the area under the gum line. Like other types of X-rays, dental X-rays use low levels of radiation. The dentist can use the images X-rays create to diagnose oral infections, dental caries (cavities), or other similar issues.
Along with diagnostic purposes, dental X-rays can also help the dentist track growth in children or find potential problems before they go from minor and asymptomatic to serious and painful.
Why Would the Dentist Recommend X-Rays?
Again, some pediatric dentist patients need X-rays to check for suspected dental disease. If your child has tooth pain, sensitivity, swelling, bleeding gums, redness, or another sign of infection, the dentist may need to X-ray the area. An X-ray can help the dentist to get a full picture of a possible problem, make an accurate diagnosis, and create a treatment plan.
The dentist may also recommend an annual X-ray as a preventative measure or to chart changes in your child's mouth. Some dental practices X-ray new patients. This can help the dentist to create a baseline assessment of your dental health. If you recently switched practices and have current X-rays (from your former dentist), talk to the office staff about transferring this record.
Are All X-Rays the Same?
No, all dental X-rays are not the same. According to the Journal of the American Dental Association, bite-wing, panoramic, and periapical are common types of dental X-rays. As the name implies, you will need to bite down for a bite-wing X-ray. Dentists use this type of image to look for decay in the back of the mouth. Bite-wings can also help to detect cavities under fillings.
The panoramic X-ray provides a broad picture—or panoramic view. This preventative type of X-ray creates an image of the entire mouth. Instead of showing just the visible tooth, a periapical X-ray helps the dentist to see under the gum line.
Your child may need one or more types of X-rays during their pediatric dentistry visit. The specific X-rays your child's dentist chooses or recommends depend on their dental health, overall health history, age, and current symptoms.
For more information, contact a children's dentist in your area.