News 08/05/2017

X-rays and their importance in maintaining your dental health

X-rays are used within the dental surgery to help detect areas of decay or infections present, in areas that the dental team cannot see, such as between teeth or in tooth roots. By identifying problem areas early, it is possible to reduce the need for extensive dental restorations.

Types of X-rays

There are a variety of different x-rays available. Some will focus on just one tooth, others will provide images of your whole mouth. The type of x-ray used will depend on the problems you are experiencing and the treatment the dentist is hoping to complete.

X-ray uses

X-ray images are one of the most valuable tools a dentist has for keeping your mouth health. X-rays can be used to:

  • Look for areas of decay that the dentist may not be able to see just by looking, such as decay between teeth
  • Look for decay under a filling
  • Look for cracks or other damage in a filling
  • Alert the dentist to possible bone loss from gum disease
  • Show problems in the root of a tooth, such as infection or death of the nerve
  • Help your dentist plan, prepare and place dental implants, braces, dentures or other dental work
  • Look for other problems, such as cysts, cancer or changes caused by diseases of the body

X-ray Frequency

X-rays will normally be taken at your first appointment, in order to help the dental team, build up a full picture of your dental health. After this they are taken every 12 – 36 months, depending on a number of risk factors such as your age, history of tooth decay and the condition of your teeth and gums.


With the improvements in dental x-ray technology over the years, the risk from a dental x-ray is very small. Digital x-rays have reduced radiation by as much as 80%. This is further reduced by the fact the dental team are very careful to only take x-rays when they are clinically necessary. You should however advise the dental team if you are pregnant and they will take extra care, probably by deferring your x-rays until after the baby has been born.

If you have any further questions on the use of x-rays during your dental appointments do not hesitate to ask the team at your next visit. Call Benfleet Dental Centre today on 01702 557766 and book a consultation.

Map of Benfleet Dental Centre

Visit the practice

Benfleet Dental Centre

8 Benfleet Road, Benfleet. SS7 1QB

Opening times

Monday08:00 - 17:00
Tuesday08:00 - 18:30
Wednesday08:00 - 17:00
Thursday08:00 - 17:00
Friday08:00 - 17:00
Saturday09:00 - 14:00*
*By appointment only