X-rays (radiographs) are a vital and necessary part of your child’s dental diagnostic process. Without them, certain dental conditions can and will be missed.
X-rays detect much more than cavities. For example, radiographs may be needed to survey erupting teeth, diagnose bone diseases, evaluate the results of an injury, or plan orthodontic treatment. X-rays enable dentists to diagnose and treat health conditions that cannot be detected during a clinical examination. If dental problems are found and treated early, dental care is more comfortable for your child and more affordable for you.
The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends X-rays every 6 months for children with a high risk of tooth decay. In addition, most pediatric dentists request bitewing X-rays once a year and panoramic (full-mouth) every 5 years.
Pediatric dentists are particularly careful to minimize the exposure of their patients to radiation. With the use of lead aprons and digital X-rays, the amount of radiation received in a dental X-ray examination is extremely small. Today’s equipment filters out unnecessary X-rays and restricts the X-ray beam to the area of interest.
With digital X-rays, there is no need to wait for the film to be developed before it can be viewed. So the entire checkup appointment can be a lot shorter. The digital images can be enlarged and contrast enhanced, which gives Dr. Verhagan a clear, more detailed look at your son or daughter’s teeth.