X-rays have been used by dentists for years to look for oral health hazards and to help them create treatment options for their patients. Our office utilizes digital X-rays in Vancouver, Washington, which are safer for your smile than X-rays of the past. Call Two Rivers Dentistry at 360-256-1202, and one of our team members can tell you more and schedule your appointment with our dentist, Dr. Vaughn Teuscher.
During a typical dental cleaning, our dentist and our team may not always be able to spot problems that could affect your overall oral health. This is why we depend on digital X-rays to find, diagnose and treat areas of concern. If you feel worried about the radiation present in digital X-rays, this is one fear you can put to rest. Our office uses extremely low levels of radiation that cannot harm you in any way. The major benefit of digital X-rays is that it allows our dentist to see the results immediately.
Oral Health Problems Detected by Digital X-rays
Diagnostic X-ray equipment helps our dentist see signs of tooth decay before it is too late and the tooth must be extracted. This allows him and you to take action to eliminate decay from the tooth. Some of the other things Dr. Teuscher can spot with the help of diagnostic X-rays include:
- Cavities between your teeth that would be impossible to see otherwise
- Problems with your alignment
- Extra or missing teeth as well as wisdom teeth before they erupt
- Oral tumors
- Monitoring of an illness or injury affecting the mouth
- Bone diseases
If you are interested in seeing your X-rays, our dentist will place them on an angled flat surface and point out any problems he found. Most adult patients have digital X-rays once a year, while children may need them more often.
Types of Digital X-rays
Dr. Teuscher will use a specific type of digital X-ray based on your suspected oral health issue. The bitewing X-ray is the most common. It allows our dentist to see decay and other issues that may be happening between your teeth. At the start of the X-ray, our dentist or one of our assistants will place a cardboard separator in your mouth so the results show only one specific area. Other types of digital X-rays include:
- Periapical: This type projects an image of your entire tooth, including its roots. It is useful to evaluate the root structure and bone level as well as detecting tooth abscesses and cysts.
- Panoramic Radiograph: A panoramic X-ray makes it possible for our dentist to see your entire mouth. This includes your jaw, upper teeth and lower teeth in one image. It gives us a detailed image of potential problems that may be difficult to see up close. This type is especially helpful to predict the way a pediatric patient’s teeth may erupt in addition to showing potential complications with wisdom teeth.
Additionally, digital X-rays can be either intraoral, which means the film goes inside the mouth, or extraoral, with the film outside the mouth. If you have additional questions or concerns about digital X-rays, please do not hesitate to ask any member of our team.