Why Do Dentists Take X-Rays?

There are many reasons that dentists take x-rays of the teeth. Some of the most common reasons are listed below.

Dentists Take X-Rays To Check For Decay Under Fillings

Sometimes decay under fillings can occur and can only be seen with a dental x-ray.  It’s not uncommon for decay to recur under fillings some time after they were placed.  If the filling is quite old, the edges of it can deteriorate.  This allows bacteria to get under the filling and cause decay.

Examine The Area Before Procedures 

Dentists need a full view of the teeth and bone before procedures such as braces, implants, and tooth removal.  Before undertaking some procedures, the dentist may need to take x-rays to fully assess and recommend the appropriate treatment.  With surgical procedures, the dentist will need to see where the nerves are to assess whether there are any extra risks associated with the treatment.

Look For Decay Between Teeth

Sometimes decay isn’t visible to the naked eye and exists in areas the dentist cannot see.  In between the back teeth is commonplace for decay to occur.  As it is impossible for the dentist to clearly see these areas, x-rays will routinely be taken to check between the teeth.

Look For Infection At The Tip Of The Root

Infections can appear at the very bottom of your teeth where the bone is, which needs to be confirmed using an x-ray.  Before doing the treatment, the dentist will need to take an x-ray in order to confirm that there is an infection and to guide them on what treatment is necessary.

Check For Bone Loss Associated With Gum Disease

Gum disease can cause bone loss and an x-ray will show how advanced it is.  The x-ray will show how far the bone has shrunk back and in what parts of the mouth it is the most severe.