Radiography refers to the taking of x-ray images. These are images that show areas inside of your body that cannot be seen from the outside with the naked eye. In dentistry, these images are used for showing your teeth and the bones in your face and mouth. They are a critical part of diagnosing different oral health issues and providing you with treatment. At Fern Creek Dentistry, we take these important images using digital radiography.
Why are X-Rays Necessary?
To diagnose different oral health issues and provide you with the most effective care possible, we need to examine your whole mouth. The problem with this is that there are many parts of your mouth that cannot be easily examined with the naked eye. This is where x-rays come in. These images show us the parts of your mouth; we cannot otherwise see. This enables us to detect issues that might otherwise go undetected until they become worse. The earlier these issues are diagnosed and treated, the better. You are not left suffering with significant symptoms and treatments are both less invasive and more expensive.
A Brief History of Radiography
While dentistry has been around for quite some time, x-rays are a much more recent addition to the practice. In early dentistry, issues could only be diagnosed by listing symptoms and looking at what could be seen inside your mouth. This all changed with the invention of x-rays.
The x-ray was discovered in 1895 by a German physicist. x-rays were quickly integrated into the medical field, and the dental field followed closely behind. Beginning in the 1950s, x-rays became a regular part of dental care. These traditional x-rays are film based. The images captured with the x-ray beam need to be developed, which is done in a darkroom using chemicals. Today, however, advances in dental technology have led to the development of digital x-rays.
What Makes Digital Radiography Different?
Digital x-rays still provide us with images of your teeth and bones. However, they are a bit different. Instead of biting down on a film, a small digital sensor is used. Once the sensor captures the image, we can view it on a computer screen rather than having to develop it. Digital x-rays are more comfortable and much faster.
What Benefits Do Digital X-Rays Offer?
One reason why many patients avoid dental x-rays is the fear of radiation exposure. While radiation exposure is low, the radiation exposure with digital x-rays is much lower. In many cases, exposure is reduced up to 90%. This can be a great relief for those with concerns about radiation.
Digital x-rays also allow us a much closer look inside of your mouth. Pictures are shown almost immediately on the computer, eliminating the need for development. We can zoom in on certain areas of your mouth and change the contrast to spot the smallest details. These features allow for a more accurate diagnosis. We are then able to formulate more effective treatments. If you need to see a specialist, we can easily transfer your x-rays without having to worry about the physical copies getting lost or ruined.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding digital radiography, do not hesitate to call Fern Creek Dentistry at (704) 380-9555 today.