Althouse, Carroll & Alperin Dentistry

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Really? Do I Really Need Those Dental X-rays??

So you’re sitting in the dental chair and your hygienist, who you love, says the doctor would like you to have some x-rays taken today. We know what you’re thinking….
“Really? Do I really need those x-rays? My teeth feel great and I have no problems, no pain, and no sensitivity. I can put those off until next visit. After all, I’ve seen Dr. Oz and 20-20 and I know how dangerous those x-rays can be…”
Look, we really do get it! Most patients are not excited about having x-rays taken and we do know the effects radiation can have, but x-rays are important for a variety of reasons. Your dentist can be a very experienced, excellent practitioner, but some problems can remain hidden without the utilization of dental x-rays. Dental x-rays can help in diagnosing decay between the teeth, decay below existing crowns and fillings, gum disease, tumors, cysts, and other infections. These x-rays aid your dentist in detecting these dental diseases early on and can save you from uncomfortable, time-consuming, painful, or more expensive experiences in the future. Having dental x-rays taken once a year as part of your preventative care is most recommended. Most insurance companies cover regular dental x-rays but even if you have to pay out of pocket, the benefits are priceless!
At our office, we do everything in our power to limit the dosage of radiation the patient receives from dental x-rays. In reality, a person is exposed to radiation daily just being out in nature! Sources of exposure include sunlight, cooking with natural gas, and taking a flight across the country. These everyday sources of radiation are much greater than what we get from dental x-rays. Digital x-rays, like the ones we use in our office, expose patients to only ¼ the amount of radiation as conventional films. Furthermore, we protect all of our patients from the radiation with a lead apron and thyroid collar. This protective apron shields the body and decreases the amount of radiation absorbed.
We at Drs. Althouse, Carroll, Alperin, and Casteen feel very fortunate to have such nice patients and we want only the best treatment for them. We feel strongly that x-rays are an essential tool in providing the highest quality of care that our patients deserve!

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