Do I Need Dental X-Rays Annually At My Calgary Dentist Office?

Do I Need Dental X-Rays Annually At My Calgary Dentist Office?

The use of various forms of x-rays by your Calgary dentist office is an extremely valuable tool to be able to diagnose and treat various dental issues, including tooth decay (cavities), abscesses, impacted wisdom teeth and bone loss.

There are several types of dental x-rays that your dentist in Calgary or dental hygienist may recommend at your next dental visit.  Some of the more common types of dental x-rays include the following:

  • Bitewing x-rays: This type of dental x-ray shows both your upper and lower back teeth and are used to check for decay between your teeth.  These x-rays also show how your upper and lower teeth line up and can also show bone loss.
  • Periapical x-rays (PAs): This type of dental x-ray shows your entire tooth, form the top of the exposed part of your tooth (the crown) down to the end of its root and to the bones that support your teeth.  Periapical x-rays are taken to diagnose dental issues found below your gum line or in your jaw, including impacted teeth (such as wisdom teeth), a dental abscess, tumours and cysts and bone issues.
  • Panoramic x-ray: A panoramic x-rays shows a wide view of your entire jaw, including all of your teeth, together with your sinuses, TMJ (temporomandibular joints), jaw and nasal cavity. A panoramic x-ray can show such issues as impacted wisdom teeth (or any impacted tooth), bone loss or abnormalities, tumours and cysts, as well as infections and fractures of your jaw or other bones in your face.

If you are new to a Calgary dentist office and have had dental x-rays taken at a previous office, you should always request or have one of our friendly dental team members request these x-rays from your previous dental office, particularly if the x-rays were taken within the last few years if they are bitewings or PAs or within five years if it is a panoramic x-ray. As most dental offices use digital x-rays, your x-rays can easily be transferred to our Calgary dentist office via secure email for our review.

Whether you should have x-rays taken at your annual or bi-annual check-up and cleaning with your Calgary dentist really depends upon a variety of factors, including the following:

  • the health of your gums
  • whether any tooth decay can be seen on a visual inspection by your Calgary dentist
  • whether you have any tooth pain or discomfort
  • the last time you had x-rays taken
  • whether you have suffered any recent or past trauma to your mouth, teeth or gums
  • your age
  • your dental history
  • the type of dental treatment you may require
  • whether you are pregnant
  • any other health concerns you may have

If you have any questions or concerns about the frequency or necessity of dental x-rays at one of your Calgary dentist appointments, do not hesitate to engage in a discussion with your dentist or dental professional about the reasons why they may be recommending that dental x-rays be taken.  At our Calgary dentist office, we encourage you to be an active participant in your dental health.  One of the ways you can do this is to ask as many questions as may be necessary to ensure that you are fully informed about and completely comfortable with our dental treatment plan for you, including taking dental x-rays. 

Our Calgary dentist is conveniently located in the heart of beautiful Kensington / Hillhurst / Sunnyside.  If you would like to make an appointment for a dental check-up and cleaning or for any other dental concern, including a dental emergency, please call us today at 403.283.4252.  We’re here to help.

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