What Are Dental X-Rays and why are they needed?

There’s no denying the significance of a thorough examination, particularly when it comes to your chompers. But when your dentist whips out a teeth x-ray machine, do you ever find yourself questioning the necessity of the process? Why must you wear that bib-like contraption and bite down on that plastic piece as the machine clicks and whirs away? And most importantly, is it actually safe?

Make no mistake, dental x-rays are a vital component of maintaining optimal oral health. These radiographs provide dentists with a level of insight that a simple visual examination cannot match, allowing for a more comprehensive understanding of what’s going on beneath the surface. From detecting cavities and decay to screening for gum disease, bone loss, cysts, abscesses, and other abnormalities, x-rays provide a proactive approach to dental care that is essential for long-term wellbeing.

How do x-rays work?

So, how exactly do these x-rays work? During a routine visit, your dentist will typically take two to four bitewing x-rays, which allow for a closer look at the crown of your teeth and can help detect signs of decay. These images are captured by placing a bite plate in your mouth, with the x-ray machine situated on either side of your face. Panoramic x-rays, on the other hand, provide a comprehensive view of the entire oral cavity in one fell swoop. This process involves the machine moving around your head to capture a single, full-scale image that shows everything from your teeth and jaw bones to the sinus areas. This type of x-ray is particularly useful in detecting jaw disorders and any irregularities that might be present.

But what about safety? It’s true that x-rays do emit low levels of radiation, but the risk is effectively mitigated through the use of leaded aprons and thyroid collars. These safety precautions ensure that the radiation exposure is minimal, making the process completely safe and painless.

How much does an x ray cost in Australia?

In Australia, the price range for an intra-oral X-ray typically falls within the $30-50 bracket, whereas an extra-oral X-ray can set you back a considerable $90-200.

How often do I need teeth x-rays?

The frequency with which you need to have x-rays taken may vary, depending on your individual circumstances. Generally, it’s recommended that you receive an x-ray at least once a year during your annual or bi-annual dental checkup and cleaning. Children may require more frequent x-rays due to the vulnerability of their developing teeth, while new patients may need extra imaging to establish a baseline for their oral health.

How to find the best dental clinic to service your needs.

Investigating the best dentist for your needs can be a daunting task, but by asking the right questions, you can ensure that you find a clinic that ticks all the boxes. When searching for a new dentist, you must first identify your specific dental requirements. Are you looking for a specialist in orthodontics or cosmetic dentistry? Or do you have a pre-existing condition, such as gum disease, that requires expert care?

Once you have pinpointed your needs, it’s crucial to scrutinize the qualifications and experience of any potential dentist. A reputable dentist will proudly display their education, training, and experience on their website or online reviews, giving you the confidence to trust their expertise.

Another critical factor is their approach to patient care. Do they prioritize preventative care and education, or do they tend to focus solely on treating dental problems? Identifying your preferred approach and finding a dentist who aligns with your values is crucial to ensuring a positive patient experience. It’s also essential to consider their bedside manner and whether their clinic staff make you feel welcomed and comfortable.

Best dentist near me in Canberra

When considering practicalities, such as office hours and location, it’s vital to choose a clinic that suits your schedule and accessibility needs. If you lead a busy lifestyle, look for a dentist who offers evening or weekend appointments. If you don’t own a car, opt for a dentist in Canberra that is easily accessible by public transportation or within walking distance.

If you are interested to find out about our family-oriented clinic in Canberra, book an appointment with our Friendly Dentist in Molonglo Valley. Contact Molonglo Dental Surgery at 02 6287 1222.  

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