You might not think about it, but technology is an important part of any dental practice. As our tools advance and things like intraoral cameras become more common, it is nice to know that some of the traditional methods of examination only become better with time. I’m referring to X-rays, of course, which are an important aspect of any treatment plan or dental care process! X-rays, known sometimes as radiographs, are used for both diagnostic and preventative purposes. They can be used in a variety of ways, in other words, and can do everything from help pinpoint an issue to offer warning signs of impending problems that might still develop.
What kinds of X-rays are there?
There are two main kinds of X-rays that are commonly used in dentistry. Intraoral X-rays, for example, are X-rays that are conducted inside of your mouth. Extraoral X-rays, then, are X-rays that are conducted outside of the mouth. As you might imagine, intraoral X-rays are probably the most commonly used type of X-ray in dentistry. They help us get a closer look at your teeth and better understand where your pain or other symptoms might be originating.
Why are X-rays important?
You might be curious as to why X-rays would be necessary in a dental office. The fact of the matter is that teeth are very dense and contain a lot of information inside of them. Because we can’t easily access the inside of your tooth with their sight alone, it is important that we have a means to easily examine all aspects of your tooth. X-rays are great tools to take a closer look at your teeth and find any issues that might be lurking. If you come in for a visit complaining of tooth pain, for example, then we might use an X-ray to see what’s going on inside of your teeth that isn’t visible to the naked eye alone. Once we have this determined, we can better create a treatment plan and work on getting your teeth into shape.
X-rays are invaluable when it comes to finding cavities, looking at the roots of teeth, and checking the health of the bones that surround the tooth. They are also important in the diagnosis of periodontal disease and locating any other potential issues that might not have started to manifest symptoms quite yet. In this way, they are just as much a preventative tool as they are a diagnostic one.
Do X-rays hurt?
Many people are wary of the dentist’s office, and we understand! When it comes to X-rays, however, you have nothing to worry about. The process is quick and painless, and it will be over before you know it.
Are you in need of a dental examination or a new dentist? Give us a call at (503) 420-7600 today and let us figure out how we can best help you and meet your needs! We are happy to work together to find solutions to any oral health issues you might have.