What to Expect When Getting X-rays From a General Dentist

Mar 28, 2021

Dental X-rays are an essential diagnostic tool used by dentists to detect dental problems that may not be visible during a routine oral examination. X-rays can help identify cavities, gum disease, impacted teeth, and other dental issues. If you’re scheduled for X-rays during your dental appointment, here’s what you can expect:


Before getting X-rays, your dentist will ask you about your medical history, including any recent surgeries or medical conditions. It’s important to disclose any health issues that may affect the X-ray results or the procedure. For example, if you are pregnant, your dentist may recommend postponing the X-ray until after your pregnancy.

Types of X-rays

There are different types of dental X-rays that your dentist may recommend, depending on your age, oral health, and symptoms. Some of the most common types of X-rays include:

  • Bitewing X-rays: These X-rays show the upper and lower back teeth and are used to detect cavities and gum disease.
  • Periapical X-rays: These X-rays show the entire tooth, from the crown to the root, and are used to detect abscesses, impacted teeth, and other dental problems.
  • Panoramic X-rays: These X-rays show a wide view of the entire mouth, including the teeth, jaws, and sinuses, and are used to detect tumors, cysts, and other abnormalities.


During the X-ray procedure, you’ll be asked to wear a lead apron to protect your body from unnecessary exposure to radiation. Your dentist or dental hygienist will place a small, flat sensor or film inside your mouth and ask you to bite down gently. The X-ray machine will then be positioned next to your face, and the image will be captured. The process may be repeated several times to get a complete view of your mouth.


Dental X-rays are generally safe and don’t cause any discomfort. However, to ensure your safety, your dentist will take precautions to minimize your exposure to radiation. They may use a lead apron to cover your body and a thyroid collar to protect your thyroid gland from radiation. They may also use digital X-rays, which emit less radiation than traditional film X-rays.


After the X-ray procedure, your dentist will review the images to check for any dental problems. They may also use the X-ray results to create a treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. If they find any issues, they will discuss the findings with you and recommend the appropriate treatment options.


Getting X-rays from a general dentist is a simple and painless procedure that can help detect dental problems early. By following the preparation and safety guidelines, you can ensure that the X-ray procedure is both safe and effective.

We are proud to serve patients from all nearby communities, including Grayson lakes, Cinco ranch fountain view, Marshal oaks, Woodcreek reserve, Falcon ranch, Fulshear, and Grand lakes.

Noble Smile Family and Cosmetic Dentistry
6734 Westheimer Lakes N Dr Suite 103, Katy, TX 77494
(281) 394-2929

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