Dental x-rays expose patients to relatively low radiation doses. Repeated exposure may also increase the risk of cancer. The risk of a single dental x-ray is very small. However, some studies show a slight increase in the risk of cancer, even with low levels of radiation exposure, especially in children.
To be safe, we do everything we can to keep radiation exposure as low as possible. Basically, while dental x-rays expose you to certain radiation, the benefits of doing them outweigh the risks. If a dental hygienist is cleaning your teeth, the dentist may review the x-ray results after the cleaning is done. X-rays emit some radiation, but according to the American Dental Association (ADA), radiation exposure due to dental x-rays is minimal compared to natural and artificial radiation sources.
Children may need to have dental x-rays more often than adults because their dentists may need to monitor the growth of their adult teeth. The type and frequency of dental x-rays depend on the patient's needs, which are determined based on clinical examination and risk factors. They help us to accurately detect dental problems and provide an instant diagnosis of tooth decay and cracks. To be clear, Ria Family Dental will explain how much radiation is in an x-ray, who needs a dental x-ray, and who might not want to have a dental x-ray.
X-rays only increase the chances of dying from cancer in 1 in 2000; compare this with the natural chance of 1 in 5 of dying from cancer. Many improvements have been made to dental x-ray equipment over the years that have substantially improved the level of safety of the procedure. When x-rays were first introduced, dentists and other professionals did not understand the danger of repeated exposure to radiation and the appropriate safety features and procedures had not yet been developed. It provides precise dimensions of the bone available for dental implants, the precise position of the impacted teeth, and the precise location and extent of pathologies within the bones.
When it comes to dental health, it's always easier, less expensive and less painful to detect these problems early. You should first talk to your dentist to discuss any concerns or questions related to dental x-rays. The dentist may need to diagnose a problem that is causing pain or determine the structure of the mouth to perform a dental procedure. Most patients will have dental x-rays taken annually to make sure everything in their mouth is up to date.
If your dentist uses digital x-rays instead of showing them on film, the risks of radiation exposure are even lower.