How Often Are X-Rays Really Necessary?
You are at your semi-annual check-up with your dentist and everything is going great until that dreaded little word pops up: "X-rays." Nobody likes getting them, they are uncomfortable and if you have a bad gag reflex, well, you know how that one ends! There is also the concern with radiation and the risks associated with that. Is it really necessary to take X-rays and how often should you be getting them? The ADA states, " How often X-rays should be taken depends on your present oral health, your age, your risk for disease, and any signs and symptoms of oral disease." As a rule of thumb, in my office I typically recommend adults take X-rays of their back teeth (Bitewings or BWX) once per year and once every 5 years X-rays should be taken of all their teeth (Full Mouth or FMX/Panoramic or Pano). If you have a tooth that is causing pain, or have had a change in your mouth since the last time you had X-rays taken, then I also recommend getting an updated X-ray of