A full mouth series x-ray is a set of images that provide a comprehensive view of the entire mouth. It typically consists of 12 to 20 individual x-rays, including four bite images and eight to 16 periapical images. This type of x-ray is usually taken when a patient is new to the dentist's office, or when the dentist suspects a cyst or tumor in the jaw. It can also be used for major dental work, such as root canals, extractions, and treatments for gum disease.
At the initial appointment and every five years thereafter, Dr. Johns requires a full mouth series x-ray. This set of images provides a reference point for oral health and allows Johns to examine the dentures and supporting structures of the mouth. The x-rays allow him to detect tooth decay, bone loss, and infections.
The full mouth series consists of a sequence of 12 to 20 individual periapical x-rays or x-rays of all the teeth in the patient's mouth. Additionally, a panoramic image may be taken. This two-dimensional dental x-ray captures the entire mouth in one image, including the teeth, upper and lower jaws, surrounding structures, and tissues such as the joint and sinuses.