If you’ve ever had a dental x-ray, you already know that it’s important for both your dental health and the general health of your teeth. In fact, any general dentist in Sterling Heights recommends getting a routine x-ray every six months to check for signs of tooth decay.
A dental x-ray is a form of high-tech, noninvasive radiology. Dental X-rays produce extremely small and precise amounts of ionizing radiation—the same kind that’s used in medical imaging devices like CAT scans and MRIs. Dental X-rays are safe for your teeth—for your kids’ teeth, for your pets’ teeth, and for you!
But what exactly do dental x-rays show up on the screen?
Here are what dental X-rays may reveal.
Abscesses or cysts
An x-ray can reveal cavities underneath the surface of your tooth. If you have a deep cavity, the dentist may use a dental x-ray to check for an abscess or cyst. A dental x-ray is an excellent way to spot these little pockets of infection before they cause major problems.
Advanced gum disease
Dental x-rays often pick up signs of gum disease in the early stages. If you or your child have advanced gum disease, the dentist may recommend dental x-rays to spot early symptoms. X-rays are a good way to see the progress of gum disease even as it develops over time.
When a tooth gets very little nutrition, the bone supporting it can get weak. In severe cases, the root of the tooth becomes so weak that it can be pulled out. Dental x-rays are an excellent way to spot signs of bone loss and diseases like this. Bone loss is especially common in people who are very young or very old.
Poor tooth and root positions
This is a condition known as tooth and root crowding. It occurs when the roots of teeth get crowded so that they no longer fit into their own sockets. This is especially common in young children and teens. Dental x-rays can spot these crowded teeth before they become more serious problems.
Decay between the teeth
In many cases, dental x-rays can reveal decay that is hidden in the first layer of your tooth enamel. The dentist may be able to spot these early signs of decay and take steps to prevent it from spreading.