What is the purpose of dental x-rays?

Dental x-rays allow your dentist to identify oral health issues.


If your dentist recommends a dental x-ray, you may be wondering why you need to go through the process. Dental x-rays, also known as radiographs, are images of the teeth that are very helpful for your dentist when checking for issues that may not be visible to the naked eye. A range of oral health concerns can be identified with the help of dental x-rays — these include tooth decay, impacted teeth and cavities. Read on to find out more about dental x-rays, why they are performed, and the process involves…

Why is an x-ray performed?  

Your dentist is likely to recommend a dental x-ray once a year to check for oral health issues. In some cases, dental x-rays may be performed more often than this. The frequency of your dental x-rays will depend on your overall oral health, whether or not you are experiencing any symptoms, and whether or not you have a history of tooth decay or gum disease.

Are x-rays safe?

Dental x-rays involve the use of very low levels of radiation and are considered safe for most patients. Dental x-rays are typically safe for both adults and children. If you are pregnant or suspect that you may be pregnant, you must let your dentist know. Depending on your stage of pregnancy, your dentist may delay your x-ray.

What types of x-rays are available?

There are a number of different types of dental x-rays, each of which shows a different part of the mouth. Intraoral x-rays are the most common type of dental x-ray and include bitewing, which is usually used to check for cavities between the teeth; occlusal, which looks at all of the teeth in one image and is often used to identify abnormalities on the palate or floor of the mouth; and panoramic, which involves the use of a machine that rotates around the head. Extraoral dental x-rays identify problems in places besides the teeth and gums, such as the jaw.  

Why have a dental x-ray?

Going for regular dental x-rays can go a long way in maintaining your overall oral health. X-rays allow your dentist to identify issues in their early stages and provide treatment before any complications occur. By resolving issues as they occur, it is often possible to save time and money in the long-term. Additionally, maintaining your oral health helps promote overall health and prevent serious issues affecting the whole body.

If it’s been a while since your last dental x-ray, we encourage you to come in for a check-up and discuss any concerns with your dentist. If your dentist recommends an x-ray, they will guide you through the process and address any questions that you might have along the way.

How can we help?

At City Smiles, we offer a range of services, including general dentistry treatments designed to maintain our patients’ oral health. We encourage all of our patients to come in and see us for a check-up every six months so that we can identify and resolve any potential issues while they are still in their early stages. We highly recommend a proactive approach to oral health and work hard to help our patients prevent dental issues before they become problematic down the line.

If you would like to find out more about our general dentistry services, please have a look here.

If you would like to arrange a consultation with us, please book an appointment online or give us a call on 03 9654 6979. We look forward to welcoming you to our practice and helping to maintain and improve your oral health.

Besides general dentistry, we also offer a range of cosmetic, restorative, dentofacial and orthodontic treatments. To see the full list of services that we provide at City Smiles, please look here.