Oct 2nd, 2019

Different Types of Dental X-Rays

Posted by: Paxton Dental Care Categories: Uncategorized

During a dental appointment, it’s not uncommon for your dentist to want to take a closer look at what’s going on inside your mouth using an X-ray. They’re useful tools for dental professionals, but for the rest of us, they can sometimes be a little intimidating. Here’s a quick guide on some of the most common types of dental X-rays, so you can be more relaxed in the chair and impress your dentist with your knowledge!

Bitewing X-rays

These are probably the most common type of X-rays you’ll receive in a dental office. They are primarily used to determine whether there are cavities in the areas between the teeth and can catch problems early on that, if left undetected, would need a root canal to fix.

Panoramic X-rays

If you’ve ever stood in the middle of an X-ray machine at a dentist’s appointment, it was one of these. This type of X-ray machine rotates around the head, giving your dentist a specific and detailed view of all the teeth and bones in your head, typically used to help your dentist map out extractions or braces.

Periapical X-rays

These are similar to bitewings, but they capture focused images of a couple teeth at a time rather than a specific side of your mouth. They are mainly used on patients starting in middle age and older, because these patients are more prone to infections and abscesses; exactly the types of problems that these X-rays are good at detecting!

Dental Cone-beam CT (CBCT) Scans

These are traditionally reserved only for cases in which more information about the teeth is needed than the other kinds of X-rays can deliver. They provide three-dimensional images of the teeth, roots, and jaw, but use a bit more radiation than the others, so dentists prefer to use them sparingly!