Why Radiographs are Necessary

Apr 3

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014 | posted by: Dr. Yee

We only take the necessary radiographs at our practice. A necessary radiograph is one that is used to diagnose the extent of a dental problem that we already know exists, such as a broken tooth, a cavity, or an abscess.  We also must use radiographs as part of an initial or periodic oral examination.  In these examinations, radiographs are used to determine whether there are problems in a beginning stage that cannot be seen merely by looking at the tooth or area.

We can only see about 50% of your oral conditions without radiographs.  Radiographs allow us to see, among other things, in between the teeth, at and below the margins of fillings and crowns, and the location and density of bone that supports your teeth.  With this information we can make a full and accurate diagnosis.  Radiographs are NOT considered a preventive measure, however, they do allow us to diagnose and treat a problem early, thus preventing it from becoming worse.

Sometimes we must take several radiographs of on e particular area.  Radiographs are only a two-dimensional, black and white representation of a three-dimensional, colored tooth and bone.  Radiographs taken from different angles give a more three dimensional view of various anatomic features.  We will have a better understanding of what kind, size and location of any problems.

The healthier your mouth is and the more unremarkable your dental history, the fewer radiographs will be necessary.  The more dental problems you have had, the more monitoring and therefore, the more radiographs are necessary.

Radiation Safety

We are very concerned with radiation safety.  Appropriate protective lead shields are always provided to the patient.  We work with the radiograph units all day and have a vested interest in only taking the necessary radiographs for both your health and ours.  Be assured that the only radiograph we recommend are those we need in order to accurately diagnose and provide you with exceptional dental care.