In the past, dentists used to recommend annual dental x-rays. However, today, the American Dental Association (ADA) suggests that healthy adults with no apparent major dental problems should only need X-rays every 2 or 3 years. If you have recurrent tooth decay or other oral complications, the ADA recommends having x-rays taken once or twice a year. Complete x-rays are also necessary for certain dental procedures, such as extractions or dental planning.
If you're over 30 and have never had a cavity, you probably don't need to have those follow-up X-rays every year. However, if you seem to have cavities every time you go to the dentist, you may need them every six months to detect problems early. Generally speaking, bite X-rays should be taken once a year, while a series of full-mouth x-rays and a panoramic one should be done every three to six years. The type of x-ray you need, your location, and your dentist's experience all influence your dental costs.
X-rays can provide valuable information related to tooth decay, bone loss and other diseases that can't be seen with the naked eye or with dental magnifying glasses. When discussing the need for dental x-rays with a parent or guardian, it's important to stress the importance of making sure that there is tooth decay or not. An x-ray should only be taken during the diagnostic stage of the dental visit and should never be overused. As long as patients and dentists follow the recommended procedure, dental x-rays pose virtually no danger.
It's important to remember that the ADA recommends seeing the dentist twice a year (that is, every 6 months). This allows your dentist to monitor your oral health and detect any potential issues early on.