Digital radiography is also referred to as digital x-rays and is a form of x-ray imaging in which digital sensors are used in place of traditional photographic film. Quicker to process, thanks to the elimination of the need for chemical processing, and preferable to old fashioned x-ray films since images can be transferred digitally, the process of taking digital x-rays exposes patients to a lower amount of radiation than conventional radiographic techniques do.
How Dentists Use Digital X-Rays.
Instead of x-ray film, digital radiography utilizes a standard digital imaging capture device that allows your dentist to see images immediately after they are taken, and reducing costs traditionally associated with film processing. Special image processing techniques can enhance the image, allowing your dentist to get a much better look at what’s happening with your teeth than old-fashioned x-rays did.
Why Digital X-Rays Are an Important Part of a Dental Examination
There are several reasons why dental professionals recommend all patients to undergo x-rays, particularly digital x-rays, as part of regular dental examinations. These reasons include:
- Finding hidden tooth decay which is not yet causing pain
- Determining whether dental abscesses or cysts are present
- Determining whether any type of tumors are present in the mouth area
- To examine the condition of deep restorations, or root canal filled teeth
- To determine whether teeth need to be removed, and to see whether extra teeth are present
- To determine whether supporting bone is in good condition
- To find out whether teeth are strong enough to support a fixed bridge
- To locate fractured roots, to find abscesses in multi-rooted teeth, or to determine whether a foreign body is present
- To discover whether the roots of teeth are causing problems with sinuses
In short, digital x-rays can help dentists to find problems while they are still small, before they cause more serious issues to develop. Doing this can help to keep your entire mouth and the rest of your body healthy, plus it can help to save you time and money associated with extensive procedures that might be required in the event problems are not detected early in the game.
What to Expect
Like standard dental x-rays, digital x-rays are obtained with the sensor in the same position as old style dental films were placed, either in the mouth to focus on small areas, or outside the mouth for a larger image of the oral maxillofacial region. Your dentist may take several different shots, depending on what he or she is looking for. Once imaging is complete, both of you will be able to look at images, and any outside parties, such as an oral surgeon, will receive copies in email. Simple and cost effective, digital x-rays help dentists provide accurate diagnoses and effective treatment.