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Dental X-rays, also known as dental radiographs, are images of the teeth, gums, and jawbone taken by a dentist or dental hygienist to diagnose and treat dental conditions that may not be visible during a clinical examination. Dental X-rays use low levels of radiation to produce images that show the internal structure of the teeth and bones, allowing the dentist to detect issues such as cavities, bone loss, impacted teeth, and other dental problems. Dental X-rays are generally safe, and the amount of radiation exposure is minimal. The frequency of dental X-rays varies depending on the individual's oral health needs, but they are typically recommended every one to two years, as part of your routine dental check-up.


Dental X-rays are a type of electromagnetic radiation that can pass through your soft tissues and bones to create an image of your teeth and jaw. X-rays work by producing a beam of energy that is directed towards your mouth. The energy from the X-rays passes through your soft tissues and is absorbed by the dense materials in your teeth and jaw, creating an image. At Woodbourne Dental, we provide high-quality dental care and use the latest technology to ensure that you receive the best possible treatment. If you need a dental exam or X-ray, our experienced dentists are here to help. Book an appointment with Woodbourne Dental to experience infinitely better dental care.


Dental X-rays are an essential part of preventative dental care. They allow dentists to detect problems with your teeth and gums that may not be visible during a routine dental exam, such as underlying cavities, signs of gum disease, infection in a tooth root, and impacted teeth. X-rays can also help dentists to monitor the growth and development of your teeth and jaw. This is particularly important for children, as it can help identify potential problems with the growth of their teeth and jaw early on, allowing for early intervention and treatment. It is typically not necessary to take an X-ray at every dental checkup, provided that you visit your dentist every six months. Your dentist will typically take a new X-ray if they suspect underlying dental issues, such as an abscess, or if your last X-ray was one to two years ago, and also in preparation for a complex dental procedure or treatment such as an implant, root canal, or extraction. In the latter case, your x-ray will provide a visual aid that shows where infection or decay lies, guiding the dentist in successfully completing the procedure.


There are several types of dental x-rays that your dentist may recommend, depending on your individual needs. These include:

  • Bitewing X-rays show the upper and lower back teeth. The X-rays are used to detect cavities and decay in between your teeth.

  • Periapical X-rays show the entire length of a tooth, from the crown to the root. The X-rays are used to detect problems with the root of your teeth, such as infection or decay and detect abnormalities in the tooth or the surrounding bone.

  • Panoramic X-rays provide a panoramic view of your entire mouth, including all your teeth, jawbone, and sinuses, and are used to evaluate the overall health of the teeth and jawbone. 

  • Cone Beam CT scans provide a 3D image of your teeth and jaw which are used for more complex dental procedures, such as dental implants.


Dental X-rays are safe and use very low levels of radiation. The amount of radiation that you are exposed to during a dental X-ray is very small and equivalent to the amount of radiation you are exposed to during a short airplane flight. However, if you are pregnant or suspect that you may be pregnant, it is important to inform your dentist before having an X-ray. In this case, your dentist may recommend postponing the X-ray until after your pregnancy. In conclusion, dental X-rays are an essential part of dental care. They allow dentists to detect problems with your teeth and gums that may not be visible during a routine dental exam. If your dentist recommends that you have an X-ray, it is important to follow their advice, as it can help to prevent more serious dental problems in the future.

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