Why do I need a complete series of x-rays?

A complete series of x-rays is the first step in a thorough dental examination because it gives a full view of your mouth. We use the complete series to find a variety of oral conditions, including:

       Cavities between the teeth       
       Tartar on the tooth roots
       Worn-out or broken fillings or crowns
       Receding bone levels resulting from periodontal disease

What happens during the procedure?

First we cover you with a lead apron to protect the rest of your body while we take x-rays of your mouth. Then we place a small packet of x-ray film inside your mouth. When you bite on the tab on the side of the packet, the film is properly lined up to get a picture of your upper and lower teeth at the same time.

We repeat this process with 18 separate film packets in specific locations to thoroughly evaluate your entire mouth.

 Receding bone levels                                     Protective apron

Is a complete series of x-rays safe?

Dental x-rays use high-speed film, so the amount of radiation exposure is very low.

Machines vary, but a full series of x-rays adds only as much radiation as you’d get in 19 days from natural sources such as sunlight, minerals in the soil, home appliances, and through the atmosphere from space.

Even if you’ve recently had x-rays taken of other parts of your body, a full-mouth set of x-rays doesn’t add to the total amount of radiation in your system because x-ray radiation does not stay in the body.

A complete series of x-rays is an important part of a thorough dental examination. They give us vital information that we can’t get from any other source.

Copyright © 2005. Patterson Dental Supply, Inc. All rights reserved. #PD 1001 10/31/04