When it comes to dentistry and oral health, prevention is one of the best ways to avoid costly problems and uncomfortable appointments. If you’re able to find potential problems in your teeth and jaw as soon as possible, they can be remedied before they get worse.
One way to detect early problems is with an orthopantomogram.
An orthopantomogram or better known as an OPG is a panoramic dental x-ray of your upper and lower jaw. It will give you and your dentist a flattened 2D view of your teeth and jaw from ear to ear. As the image is panoramic, it’s very easy to detect early signs of various teeth problems, bone quality and quantity and any other pathology not visible clinically or on intraoral X-rays.
If you’re going to visit a dentist for the first time, it’s likely that you’ll be asked to get an OPG x-ray. Believe it or not, this extra procedure is well worth the effort and investment as it brings forth various benefits on your end. Here are those neat little benefits:
- Help Kids Grow Into Better Teeth
Dentists will tell you that a lot of the problems related to teeth should be solved as early as possible. That’s why children are highly encouraged to visit dentists.
With an OPG x-ray, you can have your child’s teeth inspected for various problems such as an early growth of their wisdom tooth, tooth decay, missing adult teeth, and many others. All of these problems will appear on an OPG x-ray, and by addressing them immediately, you can save yourself a lot of money and save your kids from a lot of pain.
OPG x-rays are essential for kids because the teeth are at their most vulnerable at such a young age. Additionally, teeth are much easier to treat while it’s still developing.
- Check For Wisdom Tooth Problems
Your wisdom teeth are the last to grow, and they should fully appear until you are at least 18. However, there are many cases where the teeth grow too early, and they grow improperly as well. Impacted wisdom teeth are a major problem for many worldwide.
An OPG x-ray will let your dentist know if you have an impacted wisdom tooth. These can cause the rest of your teeth to slant and move forward. Additionally, wisdom teeth can be the cause of dental infections as well. They might be called wisdom teeth, but the problems they bring are plenty.
In many cases, your dentist will likely be extracting the wisdom teeth through surgery. Wisdom teeth can be removed as early as your teenage years, and they can be harder to remove once you’re an adult as well.
- Detect Various Other Problems
OPG x-rays go above and beyond your teeth and jaw. Additionally, it can also show any changes to your teeth’s soft and hard tissues too. To put it simply, your dentist can determine various other possible problems with your teeth through this type of x-ray.
By getting an in-depth look into your teeth and jaw, your dentist can figure out the best way to treat your teeth to grow into the perfect set of whites you can imagine. Many liken an OPG x-ray to a complete check-up, and it’s easy to see why that is.
Is An OPG X-Ray Safe?
Understandably, there are a lot of concerns and some stigma behind an OPG x-ray. This isn’t just a simple x-ray; it’s an x-ray that’s very close to your teeth as well. Many people are wary of the various side effects of x-rays which is why OPGs are often questioned for their safety.
The good news is that OPG x-rays use up a small amount of radiation. As many dentists would put it, it’s as low as reasonably achievable – just enough to get the results. Additionally, today’s top dental facilities like Smileville use various techniques to make OPG x-rays safer.
One way to do that is to get high-end x-ray machines. Ideally, we use machines that offer the fastest image receptor, which will let us get the best results in as slow a time as possible, thus limiting your exposure to the radiation.
Of course, we also use the proper exposure and processing techniques to keep you safe. There is also various safety equipment such as leaded aprons and even thyroid collars for maximum protection.
We continue to look for ways to make OPG x-rays safer. If you have more doubts and fears, we’ll be happy to discuss the procedure with you.
OPG x-rays are a blessing to both dentists and patients, thanks to their various benefits. You don’t have to worry about the radiation as we’ll do our best to keep you safe from harm. Thanks to advancements in dentistry and radiology, you can rest easy knowing that an OPG x-ray will cause no harm whatsoever.