Radiation Levels In Dental X-Ray Technology
Dental x-rays play a key role in dental practice. Dental x-ray imaging is one of the most common types of radiological procedures performed in dental clinics during oral examinations. The development of certain digital techniques has significantly reduced the radiation doses of x-ray imaging hence why many dental professionals continue using this method. Panoramic views, bitewings and full-mouth series are common types of dental examinations that require X-ray technology.
A panoramic x-ray or full-mouth digital x-ray thoroughly examines your dental condition and enables the dentist to see what cannot easily be seen such as:
- Cysts in the jawbone
- Caries in between the teeth
- Advanced gum disease
- Teeth that have not been buried or erupted
Benefits of Digital X-rays for Patients
Digital x-rays have a number of benefits for patients including:
- Faster capturing process
- Less exposure to radiation
- Eliminating errors that may be present during processing in the darkroom
- Does not discolor or degrade over time
Many patients fear dental appointments because they don’t know the exact amount of radiation that they will be exposed to during the process. The good news is studies have shown that the amount of exposure in this case is low. Smaller versions of dental x-rays like bitewing or periapical produce an equivalent of about 6.5 hours of background radiation.
What Is A Typical Dental X-ray Dose?
Measurable doses as a result of radiological procedures are expressed as DRL (diagnostic reference levels). The DRL for adult exposures across most national surveys are as follows:
- 0.65 to 3.7 mGy for entrance surface kerma and 26 to 87 mGy.cm2 in kerma-area products for intraoral radiography.
- 3.3 to 4.2 mGy for entrance surface dose ad 84 to 120 mGy in kerma-area for panoramic radiography.
- 25 to 121 (children) and 41 to 146 mGy.cm2 (adults) in kerma-area product for cephalometric radiography.
Additionally, the doses of the following procedures include:
- Panoramic examinations: 4-30 µSv
- Intraoral dental X ray imaging procedure: 1-8 µSv
- CBCT procedures (depending on median values from literature): 50 µSv for medium to small-sized scanning volumes and 100 µSv for much larger volumes.
- Cephalometric examinations: 2-3 µSv
From the information above, it is safe to say that radiation exposure is very minimal when dealing with dental x-rays. You can rest assured knowing you will not be put in harm’s way when you go for your next dental check-up. If you still have doubts and questions regarding doses, consult with a qualified expert.
At Real Smile, our dentists work tirelessly to ensure that our patients’ dental hygiene are in tip-top shape. Our specialists are ready and wiling to answer any questions you might have in the most efficient way possible. We understand how crucial the role that your teeth play in daily life and that is why we use the best techniques to keep you looking vibrant; a bright smile to face the day. Call us today to get started on your consultation.