Dental X-Rays in Erie, PA

Dental X-rays - Sleep Dentistry in Erie, PA

Dental X-rays are an important diagnostic tool used by dentists in order to display your teeth, roots, jaw and overall oral structure. Regular dental X-rays are scheduled based on age, a risk of disease as well as presence or symptoms of the disease. Typically, dentists recommend taking X-rays every couple of years. The experienced dentists of Sleep Dentistry can help you avoid future dental problems by keeping up with regular dental X-rays.

Purpose of Dental X-Rays

  • Dental decay
  • Bone irregularities
  • Root pathologies
  • Periodontal disease
  • Eruption of teeth

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I have dental X-rays taken?

You should have dental X-rays taken because not even the most observant dentist will be able to spot every issue or defect with the naked eye. While potential problems may conveniently present themselves on visible tooth surfaces, many hide between teeth or beneath the gum line. It is imperative to have a clear picture of the overall health of the mouth and jaw before formulating a comprehensive treatment plan, and while tracking its progress.

How often should I have dental X-rays taken?

Generally, you should have dental X-rays taken once a year — however age (e.g. children with erupting or impacted teeth), current oral health (are you presenting symptoms of tooth decay, gingivitis, or periodontal disease?), and oral health history (have you undergone extensive dental work?) may dictate more frequent dental X-rays. 

What sort of issues can dental X-rays reveal?

Intraoral X-rays, which are taken within the mouth, can reveal cavities between teeth and bone density discrepancies (bite-wing x-rays), abscesses or abnormalities in root or bone structure (periapical x-rays), alignment and bite defects (occlusal x-rays), and more. 

Extraoral X-rays, which are taken from outside the mouth, help detect bone loss and fractures, cysts and tumors, and potential issues relating to overcrowding or impacted teeth. They also assist with the planning of dental implants, braces, dentures, and other dental preparations and procedures. The most common of these is the panoramic X-ray, which rotates around the head to capture the entire mouth area.

Can dental X-rays cause harm?

Due to the low doses of radiation, advances in technology, strict federal regulation, and precautions such as lead-lined aprons, it’s highly unlikely any modern X-ray machine will cause much harm. Regardless, pregnant women should avoid having X-rays until after their baby is delivered as a precaution.

Does my insurance cover dental X-rays?

Usually, dental X-rays are covered by insurance, but with a few caveats — many dental insurance plans are capped at certain maximums, which once exceeded the individual insured is responsible for all costs. Depending on the plan, you may be only covered for one set of X-rays annually, or as little as one every few years. It’s a good idea to check with your insurer about maximums and limits. Sleep Dentistry has financial assistance available for eligible patients. 

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