When you have a dental issue, your oral health care provider will first perform a visual inspection. This way, they can give you answers and help you treat your dental problem before they become too advanced. However, a visual exam doesn't always give them all the information they need. This is where X-rays, also called radiographs, become useful. They help your dentist detect possible tooth decay or diseases that aren't visible to the naked eye. X-rays let them see between and inside your teeth, giving your dentist the whole picture. 


The Main Difference Between the Two


The main difference between digital X-rays and traditional X-rays is their ease of use. Traditional X-rays are taken with a film, pretty much like old cameras. With this system, radiation passes through your oral anatomy. This way, the machine can create X-ray images that need to be developed before your dentist can view and interpret them. For many years, traditional X-rays have aided oral health care professionals in spotting and diagnosing a wide range of dental issues. These include tooth cavities, bone loss, and other problems that may be causing you pain or affecting your dental health. 


On the other hand, digital X-rays use a digital X-ray sensor instead of a film. This sensor receives the X-rays in pretty much the same way a film does. But instead of taking the film to be developed in a dark room, the sensor sends the images of your oral cavity directly to a computer where they appear on the screen for viewing and analysis. 


Advantages of Digital X-Rays


Advances in technology have paved the way for the implementation of digital X-rays in clinics. It's a piece of revolutionary equipment that helps oral health care professionals in diagnostics. It is also useful during the planning stages of certain complex dental procedures, like implant-based restorations. Are you wondering why digital X-rays are better than traditional X-rays? Here are some of the advantages of digital radiographs:



  • Less Radiation Exposure. Unlike its counterpart, digital X-rays use about 70 percent less radiation. Since the system uses a significantly lower radiation level, there'd be less exposure to this energy. This, in turn, makes it safer for you as the patient and the oral health care professional who administers the procedure. 


  • Sharper, Higher Quality Images. The final images from traditional X-rays are only made of up to 25 shades of grey. On the other hand, digital X-rays provide a composite of your teeth and jaw with up to 256 shades of grey. This gives your dentist a much clearer picture of your oral cavity, to see everything in much greater detail. 


  • Faster Results and Easier Storage. In the past, you have to wait between five to 15 minutes for the films to be processed then mounted for diagnostic purposes. Now, X-ray images can be taken within 30 seconds or less. The storage and retrieval of your dental history are also more efficient since they're in the computer. This lets your dentist keep a more accurate record of the ongoing history of your dental health. 


Are you looking for a much safer and faster imaging technique to diagnose your dental problem? At Implant Dentistry Periodontics & Facial Rejuvenation, we use only state-of-the-art facilities and tools in our practice. Call any of our clinics today in Tampa or Wesley Chapel, Florida, to make an appointment.