Digital Exams & Xrays

Modern diagnostic techniques that use digital imaging technology to examine teeth, gums, and underlying structures.

During dental exams, your dentist evaluates your teeth and gums. These exams are usually done every six months or twice a year. Some may need to take them more frequently, depending on the condition of their oral health.

Why are dental exams important?

Everyone, even young children, needs dental exams. Here are some reasons why they’re important:

Monitoring the development of teeth and gums

Detecting potential problems that aren’t visible to the naked eye

Reducing necessary dental treatments

Learning how to care for your mouth better

Keeping dental costs low

Your dentist collaborates with your dental hygienist to look after your smile. Oral exams allow them to identify potential issues and address them before they progress.

Routine dental visits help keep necessary dental procedures minimal. Oral health problems can cause extreme pain or tooth loss when not diagnosed and treated immediately.

How important are dental x-rays?

A simple oral exam offers dental professionals a limited view of the mouth and related structures. It’s necessary, but dental x-rays provide a more accurate visualization of what’s happening inside the mouth.

Digital radiographs or digital x-rays are indispensable preventative and diagnostic tools. Without them, issues may go undetected and turn serious without you knowing.

Digital x-rays use an electronic sensor that seamlessly captures images your dentist can view, analyze, and adjust in real-time.

How are dental x-rays taken?

Taking traditional dental X-rays starts with covering your chest and the rest of the body using a special apron.

Some X-rays are taken inside (intraoral), while some are taken outside (extraoral) of the mouth. Different types of X-rays also show different areas of the mouth.

If you’re taking panoramic X-rays (radiographs that show the entire mouth in one image), the technician will position you at the center of a unit.

They will ask you to bite down on a blocker to ensure proper teeth placement. You only need to stay still for less than 30 seconds as the machine’s rotating arm travels around your head and takes images.

Some X-rays are valid for a couple of years, so you don’t need to take them annually.

What to expect during dental exams

A dental exam with your dentist and hygienist usually includes the following steps:

Medical history review.Your dentist takes a look at your medical history or patient chart. If you’re a new patient, expect to discuss more such as medications you’re taking, conditions you’re diagnosed with, lifestyle, diet, and habits. The information is used in developing a custom treatment plan for your specific case.

Visual exams. Your dentist checks your teeth and all areas inside the mouth for potential problems. They check your gums for swelling, sores, and pockets. They also ask you to bite down to see how your upper and lower teeth align.

Professional hygiene cleanings.Dental exams usually include an oral hygiene cleaning by your hygienist. Food particles can still linger in the mouth even with regular brushing and flossing. Special instruments at the office get rid of them and make the surfaces of the teeth smoother. Targeting tartar buildup on areas the toothbrush can’t reach reduces the risk of developing dental problems.

X-ray taking.Dental x-rays allow your dentist to spot irregularities the naked eye can miss. Taking x-rays is much more convenient and faster now. Discovering issues at their early stages helps you save time and money. There are different dental x-rays, and your dentist lets you know which ones you need to take.

Are dental x-rays safe?

Dental X-rays are safe. The amount of radiation they give off is very low, compared to the natural radiation we’re exposed to.

Another advantage of digital x-rays is they no longer require films, which translates to less waste.

Not to worry, your dentist lets you know whether it’s best to delay taking x-rays and will only recommend getting them when necessary.

Be sure to inform your dental team if you’re expecting or are trying to get pregnant.

Schedule your dental exams and digital X-rays today

Are you due for routine dental checkups and cleanings? Do you need dental X-rays taken?

Get in touch with us today at DentiFlow. We’re happy to share more information on oral exams, including a range of their costs.

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