One of the most essential diagnostic tools at a dentist’s disposal is digital X-rays. It is also known as digital radiography. Dentists use X-ray scans to reveal potential dental issues undetected during a regular dental exam. The digital version of X-rays has replaced the traditional type that has a variety of benefits for patients. Digital X-rays can view and enlarge to better detect concerns or issues in your mouth.
At the dental offices of Dr. Jack Nagrani, we use the latest dental technology to ensure that you are always getting the best possible dental care. Whether you are in our offices for a regular cleaning, dental implants, short-term orthodontics, or one of our many other exceptional general dentistry and cosmetic dental services, we will use digital X-rays in all our work(depending on your specific situation). It is to make sure that we can detect any and all abnormalities to provide proper treatment for your oral health.
What You Need to Know About Digital Dental X-Rays:
- Benefits of Digital Diagnostics
- Are Dental X-Rays Safe?
- How Much Are Dental X-Rays?
- How Often Should I Get Dental X-Rays?
- Can You Get Dental X-Rays While Pregnant?
- Are Dental X-Rays Necessary?
- Are Dental X-Rays Required By Law?
X-rays are also known as radiographs which have become an essential part of any dental treatment plan. These high-resolution, detailed images provide more than a snapshot of your teeth. In fact, they can look much deeper so that your dentist has an in-depth view of your teeth, bones, and supporting tissues. Dental X-rays have the potential to reveal the following conditions in your mouth:
- Bone loss
- Developmental abnormalities
- Problems inside a tooth or below the gumline
- Abscesses or cysts
- Cancerous and non-cancerous tumors
- Poor tooth and root positions
- Decay between the teeth
The sooner we can detect dental issues, the more likely we can treat problems effectively with as little resulting discomfort, pain, or potential tooth loss.
Digital X-rays typically fall into two distinct categories: intraoral X-rays and extraoral. Intraoral X-rays are taken inside of your mouth while extraoral X-rays, then, are taken outside of your mouth. We exclusively use extraoral radiographs which are extremely comfortable.
Benefits of Digital Diagnostics
Unlike traditional X-rays, the digital versions used by dentists have a 90% reduction in radiation. They also do not require the use of harsh chemicals. By that means, they are much safer than the traditional versions used elsewhere. In addition to safety, digital X-rays are faster and more comfortable to take. With that, you don’t need to spend as much time at our office as you would for traditional X-rays.
Digital X-rays can permeate the exterior surface of your gums and teeth. In fact, they are great tools for identifying issues that go beyond the facade. Digital X-rays help your dentist determine the scope of decay, the condition of your tooth roots, the health of your jawbone, the status of developing teeth, and much more.
Digital X-rays also help save you from unnecessary appointments, surgeries, and other dental procedures. Because they provide such a thorough rendering of your mouth’s health, these X-rays often instantly provide what dentists need to see to determine the best treatment plan for you in just one visit.
Are Dental X-Rays Safe?
Compared to the traditional X-rays still sometimes used in other dentist’s offices and in the past, digital X-rays are much safer. They produce a significantly low amount of radiation to you as the patient. It is essential to keep in mind that we are all exposed to natural radiation in our environment every day.
Even though digital X-rays are considered extremely safe, we still follow the necessary precautions to keep you as safe as possible. We will only take X-rays if they are required for your treatment, and we provide lead apron shields to protect your body.
Likewise, digital X-rays require no time or chemicals to be developed since they are captured electronically, which means we will not have to put harmful waste and chemicals into the environment every time we take X-rays for our patients.
How Much Are Dental X-rays?
The cost of dental X-rays varies depending on the type of X-rays you need to have taken by our dentist. Bite-wing X-rays (those taken at checkups approximately 1-2 times per year with your top and bottom teeth biting together) can cost between $50 and $100. Panoramic X-rays give your dentist a full view of your mouth and generally last 3-5 years and can range from $100 to $200.
While the cost is a factor to consider, the benefits that X-rays provide in an examination far outweigh the costs. More significant problems (like the need for a root canal) can be caught early and prevented (at the small cavity level) before they turn into more considerable costs and more time.
Dental insurance will generally cover the cost of X-rays as a necessary part of the dental exam process, so it is a great idea to invest in dental insurance to avoid paying these costs out of pocket.
How Often Should I Get Dental X-rays?
The frequency with which you should get dental X-rays depends on the reason for your visit to the dentist, the last time you got X-rays and your medical history. During your regular dental checkups and cleanings, you will likely need to get bite-wing x-rays to ensure that there are no new issues since your last visit.
A full series is usually recommended for your first visit to a new dentist and can last for 3-5 years as long as there are no apparent issues or concerns that develop in the meantime.
Can You Get Dental X-rays While Pregnant?
When a woman is pregnant, dentists should take many precautions regarding medical procedures, foods, and activities. One primary concern is whether or not an expecting mother should expose her unborn child to radiation through dental X-rays.
If you are pregnant and require a dental exam, including x-rays, you can rest assured knowing that your child will be safe.
You are exposed to more radiation on a single domestic plane flight than you would be during dental X-rays. Our dental staff will also take every precaution necessary to protect you and your child during the X-ray process.
Are Dental X-rays Necessary?
Dental X-rays are one of the only ways that dentists can see what could be hiding in the deepest parts of your mouth, in the crevices between teeth, or beneath the gum line. X-rays will reveal those concerns that are impossible to observe from just an oral examination, and they can prevent minor problems from becoming increasingly severe concerns over time.
A cavity between the teeth can easily be remedied if found (using X-rays) in the early stages. Still, it may require multiple visits and significant discomfort if left until it becomes visible during a necessary oral exam.
Are Dental X-rays Required by Law?
While there is no actual statute or legal standard for the requirement of dental X-rays, they are generally a part of the dental exam process. They also cover the dentist as far as general liability is concerned because dentists should perform x-rays reasonably, which justifies that the patient’s oral health care has not been disregarded.
As a medical professional, the patient’s health and best interests should always be at the forefront of the doctor’s treatment procedures, including dentists using X-rays.
Digital X-rays with Dr. Jack Nagrani
Everyone deserves to have a beautiful smile. Whether you have avoided the dentist’s office for years or make regular semi-annual visits, Jack Nagrani Dentistry, Hanford, CA, can help you improve your oral health. With modern diagnostic tools, like the digital X-ray, Dr. Nagrani can save you time, money, and unnecessary appointments.
If you want to know more about the benefits of digital X-rays for all your dental needs, please contact us today! We understand the value of your time and trust at our office so we are here to ensure that you have the optimal dental experience. Our staff is available to answer your questions and address your concerns at all times. We do know that proper care and comfort depend on your feeling confident in what will be happening.
It would be best if you didn’t feel anxious or worried, so we treat you like family. We will even play your favorite relaxing music to ensure you are as comfortable as possible. Call us to schedule your appointment with Dr. Jack Nagrani.