How often should dental x-rays be taken?
Dental X-ray examinations provide valuable information that helps your dentist evaluate your oral health. With the help of radiographs (the term for pictures taken with X-rays), your dentist can look at what is happening beneath the surface of your teeth and gums. If you have questions about your dental X-ray exam, talk with your dentist. If you are a new patient, the dentist may recommend radiographs to determine the present status of your oral health and to help identify changes that may occur later. A new set of X-rays may be needed to help your dentist detect any new cavities, determine the status of your gum health or evaluate the growth and development of your teeth. If a previous dentist has any radiographs of you, your new dentist may ask you for copies of them. Because many diseases of the teeth and surrounding tissues cannot be seen when your dentist examines your mouth, an X-ray examination can help reveal:
- small areas of decay between the teeth or below existing restorations (fillings);
- infections in the bone;
- periodontal (gum) disease;
- abscesses or cysts;
- developmental abnormalities;
- some types of tumors.
Finding and treating dental problems at an early stage can save time, money and unnecessary discomfort. Radiographs can help your dentist detect problems in your mouth that otherwise would not be seen. Because of these reasons here at Parkview Dental we recommend the bite wing x-rays be taken yearly and a set of full mouth x-rays every three to five years as needed.
For further reading on this topic: ADA.org