A Word from Office Scheduler Kelly: Dental X-rays
Our patients are always asking “Why do I need to have dental X-rays taken?” The reason for these X-rays is they are another diagnostic tool that the dentist uses to check the health of your teeth and bone. The X-rays allow us to view any possible decay that could be forming between the teeth and how deep it can be, they also allow us to view the surrounding bone that your teeth are in to make sure no changes have occurred. Some examples of X-rays that are generally taken when you come in to the dental office are bitewings, Panorex, and P.A.s.
Our office usually takes four bitewings once a year, these X-rays allow us to view both your pre-molar region on the right and left side up and lower as well as the molar region on the upper and lower right and left side. These are the X-rays mainly used to check for any decay to be forming. The name bitewing refers to the little tab of paper or plastic situated in the center of the X-ray film; which when bitten on, allows the film to hover so that it captures an even amount of the needed information.
The Panorex; or “pan,” is only taken every three to five years. This X-ray gives the doctor a full mouth view and we are able to see all of the teeth as well as your sinuses and the tempomandibular joint. This X-ray is to check overall and to see if any bone changes have occurred. It is also used to check the overall health of your mouth.
And lastly the P.A., which stands for periapical film, is commonly used when patients come in and are having a problem with a certain tooth. With this X-ray we are able to get the full view of the tooth all the way from the crown of the tooth to the tip of the root and any surrounding bone.
X-rays are a wonderful tool for the doctor to use to help evaluate and improve your health. If you have questions about your dental X-ray exams, always feel free to discuss them with your dentist.