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What is a Panoramic X-ray?
Panoramic X-rays are two-dimensional X-rays that provide a full image of a patient's mouth, including teeth, head and neck bones, and other structures.
Unlike bitewing dental X-rays, which give an up close image of your teeth, panoranic X-rays give your dentist a full view of your head and neck as well so they can diagnose not just cavities and gum disease, but more complex issues such as oral cancer, jaw bones issues, or other abnormalities.
Why Do I Need a Panoramic X-Ray?
There are many benefits of getting a panoramic X-ray, including:
- Better Care - Panoramic X-rays give a full view of your head, neck, and jaw so your dentist can quickly diagnose cysts, tumors, growths, and other abnormalities during your visit.
- Early Detection - Providing a view of your head, neck, and jaw and how they work together as a whole helps your dentist detect issues before they worsen.
- Prolonged Life - Panoramic X-rays allow your provider to catch conditions such as oral cancer early on when it's less aggressive and easier to treat.
- Discover Changes - Getting a panoramic x-ray every 3-5 years lets your dentist see changes in your mouth as time goes on, so they can easily detect if your teeth have shifted or you're experiencing other abnormalities.
- Useful for Different Stages - Panoramic X-rays are incredibly beneficial to the treatment of patients of all ages. They allow us to see if there is a need for orthodontic care in children. if a teen has wisdom teeth that are growing in and causing issues, or to detect problems such as TMJ, cysts/growths, and oral cancer in adult patients.
What Can I Expect from My Panoramic X-Ray?
While you're getting your panoramix x-ray taken, your dentist will position your head and support it with chin, forehead, and side rests, and stabilize your bite so that it stays open. Then, the X-ray machine will rotate around your head for about 30 seconds, providing a full image of your mouth and jaw.
Panoramic X-rays are only recommended every 3-5 years, but the benefits are well worth it. If you're interested in learning more about panoramic x-rays and how getting one could benefit your oral health or you'd like to schedule an appointment, please call our office at 256-233-4803!