During dental exams, your care provider spends most of the appointment looking at your teeth and gums. They use dental X-rays to create images of parts of the mouth and jaw that aren’t usually visible, like underlying bone structure. Oral surgeons also use these images to develop treatment plans and decide how to perform a surgical procedure. This guide outlines a few of the most common reasons why these practitioners rely on X-rays.
Tooth & Jaw Injuries
After facial trauma, an X-ray is the best way to identify broken bones and damage to the tooth roots. Depending on what these images reveal, you may need tooth extraction or jaw surgery. Being able to identify the extent of the problem makes it easy for an oral surgeon to provide the care you need.
Abscesses & Cysts
Oral tissue infections can lead to a buildup of pus in the gums and create pockets in the soft tissue known as abscesses. This condition is very painful and can damage both the teeth and jawbone. However, infections are often invisible until severe symptoms develop, so oral surgeons use X-rays to locate abscesses and treat them.
It is sometimes possible to see changes in your mouth long before you feel them. Gum disease, bone disorders, and even some types of cancer can be detected using an X-ray. The sooner these issues are identified, the more likely surgical and nonsurgical treatments are to be effective. Undergoing routine scans can play a role in protecting your oral health.
Wisdom Teeth Removal
Wisdom tooth removal is one of the most forms of common oral surgery, and it also requires X-rays. These scans help dentists monitor the growth and position of your wisdom teeth, so they know whether the procedure is necessary. The images also help oral surgeons plan extraction, making the process easier and safer.
X-rays are among the best tools dental care providers have to protect their patients’ oral health and develop effective treatments. Oral Surgery Associates of Alaska is a trusted provider of oral and maxillofacial procedures in Anchorage. Their skilled oral surgeons provide wisdom tooth removal, trauma care, and dental implant procedures to restore patients’ smiles. To schedule an appointment, call (907) 561-1430 or send a message online.