Great care must be taken when placing the X-ray beam at a right angle to the dental sensor, to avoid common mistakes. By incorrectly directing the beam in the horizontal plane, the proximal contacts are superimposed on the periapical or bite wing radiographs, rendering them diagnostic useless and resulting in repetition. Basically, while dental x-rays expose you to certain radiation, the benefits of doing them outweigh the risks. The wrong exposure can be caused by many factors, the most common being an inadequate exposure setting.
Incorrect time selection is the most likely error because most intraoral X-ray units have fixed or unalterable milliamperage (mA) and kilovoltage (kVp) settings. Time and milliamperage control the density or overall darkness of an image, while kilovoltage controls contrast or differences in the dark. Exposure time settings should be based on the speed or type of receiver, the area exposed, and the patient's size and height. Each treatment room should have a table of exposure factors to guide the operator in selecting the appropriate kVp, mA and time setting for each periapical and bite.
Consult the manufacturer's manual for recommended settings for specific intraoral views or projections. Generally speaking, the recommended time setting for each area is based on the size of an average adult patient. Therefore, time adjustments are necessary when the patient's size deviates from the average adult. Remember that, as a patient, you have the right to have x-rays taken with you wherever you want, or to have your x-rays emailed to your new dentist.
To gain perspective, a single digital dental x-ray has 0.1 mrem radiation and a set of 4 bites has 0.4 mrem. The general rule is that you should not have x-rays, unless you are dealing with a dental problem that absolutely requires an x-ray to develop a treatment plan. I am thinking that dental insurance does not recommend having 18 x-rays done on the mouth, more often than 1 in 3 years, and they are questioned by the dental health department. I wonder how many dentists get 12 oral x-rays every year, when the worst dental work they need is prophylaxis (cleaning) or maybe just one tooth decay at a dental appointment.
In addition to minimizing exposure to X-rays, provincial regulations require dental offices to follow certain procedures when taking images, such as placing lead aprons and neck collars for patients. Basically, a dental x-ray gives you all your daily exposure to background radiation in a one-second energy pulse. I looked this up because yesterday I had 18 x-rays due to incompetent dental assistants and silly procedures. Extras are always due to incompetence and you have had many dental x-rays done due to technical incompetence.
I think the logic of comparing dental x-rays to ambient radiation is wrong because ambient radiation is not forcibly introduced into the body. I refused the last set of x-rays and that's when he made me sign a waiver and then decide that the X-rays from a year ago showed “possible tooth decay”. A complete x-ray of the mouth is equivalent to approximately 24 Sieverts plus 8.5 to get an average per X-ray multiplied by 6 times, which is equivalent to 51 Sieverts. If dental insurance pays for 10, 20, or 30 x-rays over a certain period of time, dentists will give you as many x-rays as your dental insurance allows and pays for.
I went to the dentist a month ago, they did a lot of x-rays and they're sending me to another dentist who also wants to do his own series of x-rays. .