The benefits of digital x-rays
Digital x-rays in dentistry have been an important tool from its inception. X-ray images, also known as radiographs, give dentists insight on your oral health that is not seen to the naked eye. The use of state-of-the-art digital x-ray equipment acts as a third eye. We are able to capture and detect early gum disease, tooth decay and other ailments that may arise.
With digital x-ray technology, a small electronic sensor is used in your mouth to capture an image and instantly deliver it to a computer screen. The entire digital x-ray process is only asked of you when our dentists need to obtain better diagnostics to solve oral health issues. Each case is reviewed on an individual basis, keeping your safety as a top priority. We are here to answer any questions or concerns you have regarding digital x-rays and other diagnostic resources.
Benefits of using digital x-rays include:
- No chemical processing or waiting.
- Digital x-rays emit approximately 80% less radiation than typical x-ray machines.
- Clearer digital x-ray images result in a more accurate diagnosis.
- Instant imaging allows us to make treatment recommendations right away.
- Using digital x-rays allow for easier sharing and storage options.
How often do I need a digital x-ray?
Some of our patients require digital x-rays every 6 months. Whereas those with excellent oral hygiene and low cavity risks only require x-rays every year or so. The frequency of x-rays will be individualized for you at your visit. Other reasons for having x-rays taken include checking the jaw for signs of cancer or other abnormalities. Additionally, they are used to assist with treatment diagnosis, or as a requirement for certain procedures, such as root canal treatment.
Be proactive with oral cancer screening
Oral cancer health screening is a beneficial measure to take. The goal of this diagnostic procedure is to recognize the early stages of oral cancer when there is a higher chance for effective treatment. If left undetected and untreated, mouth cancer can lead to a variety of serious problems, and can even be fatal.
What are the symptoms of oral cancer?
Oral cancer signs include:
- White or dark red patches in your mouth, or on your lips or tongue.
- Lumps or changes in the texture or colour of the mouth tissues.
- Bleeding or numbness in the mouth; sores or patches that do not heal.
- Difficulty swallowing; changes in taste or tongue sensation.
Types of oral cancer screenings
Visual exam: Major parts included in a visual oral cancer screening exam are your neck, lips, face, inside of the nose and oral cavity. Pre-screening, all removable dental appliances must be dislodged to expose all areas of the mouth.
While the patient sits or lays down, your dentist will search for abnormalities using a light, mirror and a tongue depressor. Other tools may be used in the cancer screening process, however, it will be minimally invasive.
Physical exam: A physical oral cancer screening exam consists of your dentist touching around the chin, the jaw, in the oral cavity and the head and cheeks. Doctors are looking for abnormal masses or nodules. Another indication would be immobility in normally mobile tissue.
An oral cancer screening is a preventative measure for reducing the risk of cancer in oral care. It is an exam to open up the discussion with your dentist about precautions that can be taken and any concerns that you have about oral cancer.
Regular oral cancer screening and dental check-ups can result in early detection.
Digital x-rays are an important part of your regular dental exam. Likewise, taking preventative measures with an oral cancer screening provides an active role in your oral health. Book a dental exam at our Blairmore clinic today – (403) 562-2236.