What Are Digital X-Rays, What Are They Used For, and What Are the Benefits?

What Are Digital X-Rays, What Are They Used For, and What Are the Benefits?

May 26, 2021

Through the years, we have seen top-of-the-line technology that has changed dentistry as we know it. From dental implant technology to laser dentistry, there’s so much that our dentist in Lakewood can do with the latest technology.

We cannot fail to appreciate how x-rays have evolved from how they were decades ago. Now, we have Advanced Radiology Systems that can peer into your mouth and view the dental structures. With such technology, there’s no dental problem that we cannot correct.

Digital Dental X-Rays Basics

Dental radiographs or digital x-rays emit controlled radiation pulses that create images of your internal structures. With these images, our Lakewood dentist near you can view the various tooth structures and the jaw.

A digital dental x-ray near you can find and image dental cavities, gum or bone loss, benign or malignant tumors, periodontal disease, and any other abnormality within your head’s lower portion.

They are also valuable for finding teeth that haven’t erupted in children and adolescents. If your children need to undergo orthodontic work, digital x-rays can image the root structures.

Digital dental x-rays operate under the same principle as the conventional x-rays used by doctors and other medical professionals. They utilize the natural contrast that exists within the mouth and the jaw.

For instance, denser parts of your mouth like the jawbone, crowns, teeth, and fillings will show as the lighter parts of the x-ray image compared to the darker parts representing the softer tissues. Cavities can be seen in an x-ray since they show up as less dense areas of the teeth.

Digital dental x-rays emit very low levels of radiation as compared to traditional x-rays. As a matter of fact, they emit nearly 90% less radiation than traditional x-rays. In other words, the amount of radiation emitted is nearly as much as if you were on a five-hour flight. Exposure to the radiation is also reduced because we use lead shields and collars during the procedure.

When Do You Need a Digital Dental X-Ray?

A digital dental x-ray near you is a vital part of your dental visit. Your oral health depends on it. This is because these x-rays can detect tooth decay. If you skip getting an x-ray, our dentist in Lakewood may not be able to catch an issue before it escalates.

What Are the Common Types of X-Rays?

You can expect three main types of dental x-ray views. With each type of view, our dentist can view different parts of your mouth. However, a full mouth x-ray series is used in most scenarios, not unless our dentist is looking for a specific issue.

Here they are:

  • Bitewing View

Our Lakewood dentist near you can check for cavities, bone loss in the sub-gum portions of your teeth, and crown with the bitewing view. This view images the back halves of the lower and upper jaws.

  • Periapical View

With the periapical view, our dentist can get to view your tooth’s root structures in detail. The periapical view can detect the source of nerve pain and impacted teeth that haven’t erupted. Periapical views are widely used when you are about to undergo periodontal procedures, root canal therapy, and endodontic therapy.

  • Occlusal View

The occlusal view is used to study the bones in the lower and upper jaws. They can detect bone loss, evidence of tumors, and if there are blockages in the salivary ducts.

Are There Other Forms of Dental Imaging

Special circumstances call for the use of other types of x-rays such as:

  • Cephalogram

This is an extraoral x-ray view employed to detect the cause of malocclusion and show how the facial bones interact with the jaw. The cephalogram is quite a useful imaging view, especially when you are about to get dentures or implants.

  • Panoramic View

These x-rays are taken by a machine that rotates around the head to get a detailed view of all the upper teeth in the upper and lower arch. They blend all the parts of the full mouth exam into one large-scale image.

How Does the Process Work?

As you know by now, digital dental x-rays are offered as part of the examination and teeth cleaning services. During your session, you will go to the x-ray room, and a lead shield will be placed to cover your whole body.

Our dentist will place a sensor in your mouth, which will capture the images of your teeth and jaws and then sends the information to the computer. Just like that, images of the internal structures are taken.

Once they are taken, our dentist will examine them and see if there’s any dental problem. If there’s a problem, our dentist will let you know.

Contact us at Station Dental Group in Lakewood if you need a digital dental x-ray near you.

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