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Are X-Rays Useful in Finding Periodontal Issues?

Posted on 11/13/2015 by Leslie Davis
A dentist examining a patients dental x-ray.While most of us know that x-rays are used in a dental office to help find cavities, did you know that this technology is also useful in detecting gum diseases? Find out why x-rays are so important when it comes to your gum health.

Using an X-Ray in a Periodontal Evaluation

When examining your periodontal health, your dentist will first do a visual exam to check out the appearance of your gums.

During this exam, he or she will be looking for signs that the gums are pulling away from the teeth or signs of heavy tartar or plaque buildup. Additionally, he may measure the depth of gum pockets found around the teeth.

In addition to a standard exam, x-ray technology can be a useful diagnostic tool to help your dentist evaluate for potential gum problems. Periapical x-rays are especially helpful, as these images can give your dentist a look at the entire tooth, including the surrounding bone and the tooth root. Your dentist will better be able to examine tartar found below the gums as well as areas of infection and bone loss.

Using X-Rays in the Treatment of Gum Disease

Not only are x-ray images useful in finding gum disease, but they can also help your dentist to come up with an effective treatment option. If bone loss isn’t indicated, treatment recommendations may simply include good home care and a proper cleaning.

However, if the images do show progression and bone loss, your dentist could recommend treating the deep pockets and infection with scaling and root planing. Since the x-rays will identify areas of tartar buildup beneath the gums, these images can also serve as a road map so that your dentist knows exactly where to clean.

If you have questions about how x-rays are used to improve your oral health, feel free to give our office a call.

Dr. Leslie Davis

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Thursday January 23, 2020

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