Phone (513) 251-5500
May 28th, 2015

What Do the Results of X-rays Really Mean?

Category: cincinnati dentist, dental health

what to know about your x-rays by Hagen Dental DDS

Dentists use x-rays as a diagnostic tool for in-depth demonstration of your entire oral health.

Everyone’s mouth and state of oral health is different, but that’s why typically you have bitewing X-rays done once a year, and Panorex X-rays once every three years. (See more on that here.) If you have decay or periodontal disease that is detected or another known issue or risk factor, that might affect frequency of your x-rays.

Then what do the results of your x-rays really mean or show?

1. We have a baseline for the state of your oral health.

X-rays provide us with a complete demonstration of everything going on in your mouth. Remember x-rays allow us to see how decay and infections below the surface. This can help us as we work together to see a plan that ensures you are comfortable, and have confidence with all aspects of your oral health and smile.

If we can precisely determine and detect the amount of tooth decay you have, we are also able to watch that change over time. Digital X-rays will capture images of your entire mouth and those images are immediately available on our computer screen. With no development necessary, we can compare current images to older images, meaning we can see even the smallest changes that have occurred in your mouth.

2. We can see what the eye can’t always see.

Yes, we look at your tongue, teeth and gum when you visit us, but a clinical exam does not have the full power of a dental radiograph. When we use x-rays, we can better determine decay or cavities before they are visible to the naked eye. Here is a list of what x-rays allow us to better evaluate or uncover:

  • Developing or missing (or extra!) teeth
  • Abnormalities to the teeth
  • Tumors or cysts
  • Jaw issues
  • Hidden dental decay
  • Dental abscesses
  • Any bone loss from periodontal disease
  • Tarter build-up
  • The state of current fillings, crowns, etc.
  • Determine if there is enough bone for any necessary dental implants

What you could call a “normal” x-ray can show us that someone has no tooth decay, no damage to their bones, and no injuries to their teeth. Additional “normal” results show no cysts or signs of growths or anything such as an abscess. If we see tooth decay, signs of bone loss, cavities, any sort of damage to the bone, jaw fractures, changed in teeth placement, or any growths, we will be sure to talk about it with you. X-rays can save much time and unnecessary discomfort by seeing changes or problems early.

Want to learn more about our digital X-rays to make sure the pictures of your teeth, bones and soft tissues are up-to-date? Give us a call at (513) 251-5500 or visit our website here

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