Dental radiographs (x-rays) are essential, preventative, diagnostic tools that provide valuable information not visible during a regular dental exam.  Dentists and dental hygienists use this information to safely and accurately detect hidden dental abnormalities and complete an accurate treatment plan.  Without x-rays, problem areas may go undetected.

Dental x-rays may reveal:

  • Abscesses or cysts.
  • Bone loss.
  • Cancerous and non-cancerous tumors.
  • Decay between the teeth.
  • Developmental abnormalities.
  • Poor tooth and root positions.
  • Problems inside a tooth or below the gum line.

Detecting and treating dental problems at an early stage can save you time, money, unnecessary discomfort, and your teeth!

Are dental x-rays safe?

We are all exposed to natural radiation in our environment.  The amount of radiation exposure from a full mouth series of x-rays is equal to the amount a person receives in a single day from natural sources.

Dental x-rays produce a low level of radiation and are considered safe.  Dentists take necessary precautions to limit the patient’s exposure to radiation when taking dental x-rays.  These precautions include using lead apron shields to protect the body and using modern, fast film that cuts down the exposure time of each x-ray.

How often should dental x-rays be taken?

The need for dental x-rays depends on each patient’s individual dental health needs.  Your dentist and dental hygienist will recommend necessary x-rays based on the review of your medical and dental history, dental exam, signs and symptoms, age consideration, and risk for disease.

A full mouth series of dental x-rays is recommended for new patients.  A full series is usually good for three to five years.  Bite-wing x-rays (x-rays of top and bottom teeth biting together) are taken at recall (check-up) visits and are recommended once or twice a year to detect new dental problems.

  • “Thank you from our family for helping us during our dental emergency. Amie called you when our son’s front top permanent tooth was knocked out on a Sunday afternoon, and thanks to you for answering your phone and giving us advice he will hopefully get to keep his tooth until old enough for an implant. Words can’t express how thankful we are! Thank you a million times over.”

    Paula D.
  • “I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your accommodating me by solving my dental problem while I was visiting family recently. Not only did you see me on short notice but applied your expert dentistry professionally, painlessly and perfectly! In addition, your assistant and reception staff were equally competent and pleasantly accommodating. Imagine: A visit to the dentist was a pleasant, enjoyable experience. Perhaps the Haligonian hospitality and friendliness has simply transferred to CO and your business :)”

  • “I just wanted to send a quick note thanking you for all your help over the past few months with my lower front tooth. The flipper is working great as the temporary solution. I look forward to seeing you over the summer after having the implant placed.”

    Mike H.
  • “Thanks for cementing my tooth. You were very gentle. It feels better.”

    Karson – age 8
  • “Thank you so much for fixing my tooth this morning. I really appreciate you taking the time so I didn’t have to go to school with it broken on Monday. We are so lucky to have such a great, kind dentist. Thank you!”

    Maya Y.
  • “Thank you for taking such great care of me. You really went above and beyond on a Sunday by seeing me at your office when I was having such severe tooth pain. Your extraordinary care didn’t go unnoticed. Thank you for being an amazing dentist and caregiver.”

    Stephanie W.
  • “Thank you so much for your patience and kindness. You made my experience with a dentist the best I’ve ever had. I appreciate everything you did to make me comfortable. I would recommend your office to everyone!”

    Melissa B.
  • “I wanted to thank you for the excellent care you have given me over the years. I feel so fortunate to have found you as a dentist. You are always understanding and incredibly patient with my questions. You also always go out of your way to make sure my pain is more than adequately managed and that my anxiety is kept under control. I think it is amazing that you are always smiling and friendly in spite of having what I’m sure can be a stressful job. I am not surprised that you are so busy. Thanks for everything!”

    Kelly T.
  • “Thanks so much for taking such good care of me, especially since it was after hours. You are always a calm and reassuring presence and your caring and compassion is exemplary. I truly appreciate your exemplary dental care.

    Cindy A.
  • “Thank you for being such a fantastic dentist. Your professionalism and the entire quality of your staff make dental care easy and as painless as possible. your dedication to your craft is evident in your work and I feel very lucky to be your patient. Thanks for being awesome!”

    Rebecca L.
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