Parents are always concerned about their child's health and well-being, thus, why we bring them to the dentist. We often get asked, "Are x-rays really necessary?" or, "I have heard these x-rays can cause cancer." Dental radiographs (x-rays) are extremely important in diagnosing and treating your child. The Journal of the American Dental Association published an article on the benefits and safety of dental radiographs.
Dental x-rays help diagnose tooth decay, gum (periodontal) disease, infections (abscess), and even certain types of tumors. Our dental team protects your child from any radiation by use of a lead apron, which is pulled up around their thyroid. We follow the ALARA principle, this stands for "As Low As Reasonably Achievable," when taking x-rays.
The October 2012 issue of the Clinicians Report gives a comparison of common radiation doses. For example, a single dental film gives off 7 microsieverts, a panoramic x-ray gives off 26 microsieverts. Compare this to a 5-hour airplane flight, which gives off 25 microsieverts, and the average from natural sources in one year, which gives off 3,000 microsieverts.
Dr. Swain and our team are more than happy to address any questions or concerns you may have about dental x-rays!