It’s essential to maintain accurate and up-to-date oral health records. At River Rock Dental Group, we offer the latest in dental technology to provide the utmost care for our patients. Our highly trained specialists administer digital x-rays to help identify, diagnose, and treat various dental conditions. Schedule an appointment today to get started!
What Are Digital Dental X-Rays?
Although dental exams and cleanings are undoubtedly crucial to your oral health, our dentist, Dr. Timothy R. Lund, can only see structures extending from the gum line. Like traditional methods, digital dental x-rays capture photos of your teeth from every angle, even beneath your gums. However, digital x-rays utilize a sensor that, when connected to a computer, transfers pictures of your mouth structures instantly for review.
Gone are the days of waiting for traditional films to develop. Digital methods offer far less radiation exposure and use no harmful chemicals. Additionally, the digital x-ray process takes a significantly shorter time to complete compared to traditional methods.
Digital x-rays perform several beneficial functions for a dental team:
- Showing hidden structures. X-rays show the areas hidden from the common eye, such as tooth roots and spaces between your teeth.
- Creating suitable treatment. If an x-ray indicates an infection in your tooth root, your dental team can visualize its location and severity to diagnose and plan a root canal accurately. Once the dental specialists perform treatment, they can utilize a digital x-ray to ensure the team has removed all infections.
- Monitoring development. Digital x-rays also help with monitoring teeth that haven’t yet emerged. For instance, your dentist can determine whether an impacted wisdom tooth requires removal or track the progress of your child’s developing oral structures.
Dental X-Ray Types
The two primary digital dental x-rays include intraoral (inside the mouth) and extraoral (outside the mouth). Both types aim to capture different areas of the mouth and have specific x-ray methods.
Two commonly used types of intraoral x-rays include:
Patients receiving bitewing x-rays bite down on a sensor that displays the images onto a computer. Each bitewing shows in detail the upper and lower teeth, from crown to supporting bone, in one area of the mouth. Bitewings accomplish various functions:
- Detecting decay between teeth
- Highlighting changes in bone thickness from gum disease
- Helping determine the fit and integrity of restorations like crowns and bridges
- Visualizing any breakdown of fillings
Periapical x-rays show the entirety of a tooth, from its crown to the tip of its root and the bone surrounding it. The imaging method provides an in-depth look at the entire tooth structure and is often used for new patients as a benchmark. Other uses for periapical x-rays include:
- Detecting dental abscesses
- Assessing bone loss around a tooth in gum disease patients
- Identifying signs of root infection
At River Rock, we also offer an intraoral camera process that takes high-definition photos of your mouth, allowing you to see what Dr. Lund sees.
Extraoral x-rays don’t require biting onto a sensor – instead, the machine rotates around a patient’s head, providing a glimpse into all teeth and surrounding structures. Our Belgrade dentist office offers a 180-degree panoramic x-ray to capture your entire mouth. A single image captures both upper and lower teeth and can be used to:
- Assess impacted wisdom teeth
- Identify issues with the temporomandibular joint (TMJ)
- Plan dental treatments such as implants
Benefits of Digital X-Rays
Digital dental x-rays provide numerous benefits to patients, such as:
- Quicker and easier diagnoses
- Higher quality imaging
- Immediate viewing, allowing straightforward explanations of conditions to patients
- Electronic sending to dental specialists for a second opinion
- Online storage, eliminating the need for hard copies in patient files
- Known to use up to 90% less radiation than traditional x-rays
- No prep time means more efficient dental visits
- Environmentally friendly
Receive Quality Treatment and Diagnosis from Our Belgrade Dentist
River Rock Dental Group is the premier family dentistry in Belgrade, MT. We provide superior dental care to patients of all ages. Our team of dental professionals aims to ensure patient comfort and satisfaction each time they visit our office. We’re dedicated to the community we serve, staying up-to-date on the latest methods and technologies such as digital x-rays. Schedule an appointment today to reap the benefits!