Why do you take dental X-rays?
We take dental X-rays, called bite-wings, to be able to see all aspects of the tooth. When we look straight on at a tooth, we can see the biting surface, and the cheek, and the tongue surface. However, we can’t see the areas in between the teeth and we also can’t see the areas underneath your gums. By taking an X-ray, we can see all of these areas and make sure that there’s no decay or any type of periodontal disease.
We also take some large X-rays called panoramic X-rays. These show us the roots of all of your teeth at once, as well as make sure that there’s no type of pathology or any other concerns that we need to be aware of. With either type of X-ray, we make sure our patients feel comfortable and are well-protected.
How are panoramic X-rays taken?
The panoramic X-ray is one where you stand and the X-ray goes around your head. It takes usually about 30 seconds to have it taken, so it’s very quick as opposed to the bite-wing X-rays. With the bite-wings, you put the film in your mouth and you bite together.
What are extraoral bite-wing X-rays?
One thing that we are able to offer is what are called extraoral bite-wings which are a little bit different. These give us the same information as the bite-wing X-rays taken within your mouth. However, the film is placed outside of your mouth. This is just a little bit of an advancement that we can use in situations to make it a little more comfortable for some patients. If you have had problems with taking bite-wings in the past due to your gag reflex or other issues, ask about the extraoral option.