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Are x-rays necessary? If so, what is the best type of x-ray to get with the least radiation?
This year, I’ve been trying to make healthier choices for my family and started
thinking about all the environmental things we’re exposed to, like x-rays at
the dentist office. I found a couple of great articles that say you really DON’T
have to have one every year. They also mentioned that dental x-rays are pretty
low exposure and dental imaging (which I think is pretty widely used over the actual
film x-ray these days) means less radiation exposure. I also know that some dentists don't want to start any treatment with out having the x-rays to review, which makes sense because they don't want to miss something because you didn't want x-rays.
Early tooth decay does not tend to show many physical signs. Sometimes the tooth looks healthy.
The amount of radiation received from a dental x-ray is extremely small. We get more radiation from natural sources, including minerals in the soil, and from our general environment.
In children, x-rays can be used to show where the adult teeth are and when they will appear. Teeth whitening is a natural problem. They are also used in the same way for adults when the wisdom teeth start to come through.