Why Are Dental X-rays So Important?

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Dental X-ray

If you go to the dentist complaining of a toothache, the first thing they will do is look at the tooth. Then, if your dentist doesn’t happen to have X-ray vision, they will give you an X-ray. This is just because tooth decay or diseases are not always visible to the naked eye. A lot is going on just under the surface.

So Why Are Dental X-rays Important?

Simply put, X-rays allow your dentist to see the whole picture. Everything from the condition of your teeth, their roots, your jaw placement, and even your facial bone composition becomes clear to a dentist’s eye with an X-ray. Often, when a problem is visible to the naked eye, it has become very serious and advanced. X-rays are a kind of early warning system for a dentist, and the benefit to you is a less involved dental procedure.

What Exactly Do Dental X-rays Show?

Some of the things X-rays can show are:

  • Decay underneath fillings
  • Areas of decay between teeth
  • Any bone loss in the jaw due to periodontal disease
  • Cysts or other types of tumors
  • Abscesses

Types of X-rays

The most common types of X-rays are called bitewing, periapical, and panoramic X-rays. Bitewing X-rays can locate the beginnings of decay between teeth. A periapical X-ray is used to focus on just one or two teeth. When your dentist wants an image of your entire mouth, they will take a panoramic X-ray. Panoramic X-rays are helpful in identifying bone irregularities, jaw disorders, or cysts.

How Often Are X-rays Needed?

The answer to this question often depends on the state of your oral health. If your dentist monitors gum or dental disease progression, you might need an X-ray every six months. If you have no current dental issues, you may only need X-rays once every couple of years. If you are on your first visit to a new dentist, they might want to get a panoramic X-ray to assess the general state of your teeth.

Are Dental X-rays Safe?

It is reasonable to have concerns about the safety of X-rays. After all, high levels of radiation can be very harmful. X-rays, however, only expose you to very low levels of radiation. As a result, the harmful effects associated with X-rays are also low. That said, many patients ask for the protection of a leaded apron when getting X-rays. You can read what the American Dental Association says about X-rays here.

Prevention and Early Detection

The best way to prevent tooth decay is to brush twice daily and floss. A regimen of good oral hygiene can lessen the need for an X-ray. X-rays may not be very fun to get, but remember, they are an important tool for the early detection of a dental problem.

Call Us for a Checkup and Cleaning

Your team at Babylon Dental Care is dedicated to your oral health. Call us at (631) 983-6665 to schedule an appointment today.

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“I have never been to a dentist office that is sooo welcoming. I am not a fan of going to the dentist at all but when my sister recommended to try them, my thoughts about the dentist completely changed. This dentist office is very professional and do really care about the patient. I was amazed at the follow up phone call, email, and text! I highly recommend this dentist office to anyone and everyone.”

Jill S. from West Babylon


“Babylon Dental is the best! They are very flexible with their appointments and I am always greeted with a smile. I never have to wait very long once I am in the office and everyone is very professional. A truly great dental practice!”

Lesley E. from West Babylon


“This whole practice is wonderful!!! EVERYONE!! I used to panic going to the dentist, but this office made me finally do the right thing and take care of my teeth. Never thought I’d like going to the dentist… Thanks to all of the dentists and everyone who works there…”

Diane W. from West Islip


“I guess I could write this about every visit we’ve had for the past 25 years or so. Every visit we have, we’re treated like family…the good ones. Our options are always explained so we understand them & nothing is ever pushed on us. Thank you to everyone there.”

Robert U. from Lindenhurst


“I always LOVE my experience at Babylon Dental! Everybody is so kind, from the receptionist at the front to the billing staff on the way out. The dentists are thorough, friendly, and very attentive. The dental assistants are so knowledgeable and warm! This is the ONLY dentist I would ever consider going to. Keep up the great work! I look forward to seeing you all again!”

Erin M. from West Babylon


“This is the kindest, most compassionate office I have ever been to. Every person on staff is polite and courteous; not something you see too often these days. I ‘hated’ going to the dentist so much that I would only go when I had a problem. Since I started using Babylon Dental about 8 years ago, I go 2 to 3 times a year for a cleaning and just to make sure everything’s ok. I recommend this practice to everyone I know!”

Nancie P. from West Babylon


“Everything went very well. The procedure was almost painless, and since it was my first cavity filling, I was surprised at how easy it was. Everyone was very nice and willing to answer any questions I had.”

Andrew L. from West Islip


“The staff at Babylon Dental Care are by far the most professional people I’ve encountered. I was greeted with a smile from the minute I walked in and that continued throughout my entire visit. The office from the waiting room to the exam room were immaculate. Everything that was done during my visit was explained to me in detail which helps for someone with a fear of the dentist. The best experience I’ve ever had at a dental office.””

Nickesha J. from Lindenhurst


“If you have a fear of the dentist, Babylon Dental Care is the place for you. I always have an amazing experience when I visit Babylon Dental Care and I used to be someone who was very afraid of the dentist. I highly recommend this dental practice for all of your dental needs. Fantastic group!”

Robert P. from Freeport


“Who knew! I have always been afraid of the dentist because of a bad experience 25 years ago. This office renewed my comfort, and gave me the confidence to move forward and take care of dental work that should have been done years ago. The staff doctors and office personnel were so caring and receptive to my fear.”

Loretta P. from Bay Shore


“I have been a patient of Babylon Dental since Dr. Brown’s Office was originally in TSS shopping Center- perhaps 26 years now? I am always pleased with the high quality, professional care that I receive. I would not go anywhere else! Also, Maritza is a wonderful dental hygienist!”

Peter G. from Bating Hollow


“As a new patient, I was impressed by each staff member’s level of professionalism, friendliness, and knowledge. Dr. Brown gave me a thorough explanation of what was causing my dental issues, and how they could be fixed. I left feeling confident that I was in really good hands.”

Alexandra H. from Lindenhurst


“As always, Dr. Brown made my experience most memorable! I look forward to coming, believe it or not.”

Marie D. from Babylon


“First the reception area was beautifully decorated. Your office runs very smoothly and efficiently, plus the staff are professional, friendly and great at what they do. Best run office I’ve ever seen.”

Michael C. from North Babylon


“Amazing. I am deathly afraid, and have been hurt by many dentists. But Melody, who did my x-rays and cleaning, was great. I was amazed how much they actually CARED about how I felt and was doing. Dr. Brown who read my x-rays sat and just talked To me not at me for a good 15/20 minutes. Didn't suggest root canals, posts n crowns, yell at me about my missing back teeth. He just talked to me about what is currently going on and his best suggestions to care for it, which didn't include root canals, extraction etc. Therefore I would highly recommend them. And thank you for a really positive experience”

Pat M from Patchogue


“From the call center ( Jo ) to the front desk ( Jennifer) and of course Dr. Peck , highly recommended. They are professional and truly concerned about the patient's experience”

Boni M from Babylon


“I am not one to write reviews but I always have such a pleasant experience at this office, so I felt the need to share. The staff is friendly, the wait is short, it's easy to get appointments (especially because of their long hours) and it's super clean. Thank you, Babylon Dental Care!”

Jacqueline C from Sayville


“Everyone is always nice and sooooo patient. I would highly recommend this office to anyone that has a fear of going to the dentist. They also do wonderful community outreach! Very happy with the work they do!”

Andrea B from West Babylon


“The staff is so wonderful! Best experience I’ve ever had a dentist office by far. They offer the cutest “comfort bar” with tons of options to make you feel right at home. Not many people can say that they actually enjoyed their time at the dentist, but I 100% can!! Looking forward to coming back for my next cleaning!”

Rachael L from Patchogue