Our pediatric dentist will need to take regular dental x-rays of your child’s teeth. Children need more frequent x-rays than adults as their mouths are rapidly growing and changing, and they are also more susceptible towards developing cavities. Pediatric dentists use x-rays to evaluate erupting teeth, to plan orthodontic treatment, to check bone development, and to assess any facial injuries.
A dental x-ray can also help identify any problems with wisdom teeth development, and can show any teeth that might be impacted. Dental x-rays are extremely useful for enabling a dentist to diagnose and treat conditions that are not visible to the naked eye.
Advantages of Using Digital Dental Radiography
Today’s modern digital dental x-rays help minimize radiation exposure, and the x-ray beam is focused only where it is needed so these types of x-rays are extremely safe. Pediatric dentists take a great deal of care to make sure young patients are protected during digital dental x-rays.
A digital dental x-ray typically emits around 90% less radiation than traditional film x-rays.
Once the x-ray has been taken, it can be viewed on a computer and any findings discussed with you.
The images produced by digital dental x-rays are very high quality, making it easier for our pediatric dentist to identify any problems. It’s also extremely quick and easy to send this information to another pediatric dentist or to a specialist if required.
Frequency of Digital Dental X-Rays
Children with a high risk of developing cavities may need x-rays every six months. This is because the dental x-rays can show any cavities that may be developing in between the teeth. Early diagnosis helps to limit the amount of treatment required so it is far less invasive and more pleasant for the child.
Children who have a low risk of developing cavities may need x-rays less frequently. As children enter adulthood the frequency of x-rays will decrease, as most healthy adults only need x-rays taken every two years or even less frequently.
Panoramic Dental X-Rays
Sometimes a pediatric dentist will recommend a panoramic x-ray which shows the entire mouth and jaws. This can be useful for showing any extra teeth, abnormal jaw growth or permanent teeth that might be missing. Panoramic x-rays are generally used when a child reaches the age of six, and every 3 to 5 years after that. This type of x-ray can also be useful if the jaw has been injured in any way.
Are Digital X-Rays Safe for My Child?
Digital dental x-rays are very safe as the amount of radiation received is extremely small; it’s far more risky for your child to have an undetected and untreated dental problem than to undergo a dental x-ray.
Extensive safeguards are undertaken to help protect children during x-rays, and modern digital equipment is able to filter out any unnecessary x-rays, concentrating the beam on a specific area.
This helps ensure your child is exposed to a minimal amount of radiation.