At Sohn Orthodontics, we’re dedicated to ensuring our patients are well-informed, confident, and excited about their orthodontic journey. We understand the importance of addressing your questions and even those you may not have thought to ask. One such question we often receive is, “Why do orthodontists use x-rays?” Let’s delve into the answers.
Orthodontic Radiography – A Deeper Look:
Orthodontic radiography is essentially the term for what we commonly refer to as X-rays. But what exactly are X-rays? These are a form of natural light emission with wavelengths above the visible spectrum. Their unique properties allow them to penetrate soft tissues in the body, providing insights into the teeth and bones without being visible or felt.
X-rays serve as a valuable diagnostic tool for orthodontists like Dr. Sohn, enabling us to create a comprehensive picture of your orthodontic health.
When are X-rays Necessary?
X-rays are a routine part of orthodontic care. They offer a detailed view of your orthodontic health, a picture that evolves throughout your life and guides the treatment decisions.
We take X-rays of your teeth and jaw before, during, and after your orthodontic journey.
X-rays Before Treatment:
Before any clinical assessment, we take X-rays to develop a customized treatment plan. Dr. Sohn carefully examines these initial X-rays, allowing him to assess your oral system’s overall health, detect any underlying issues, and ensure conditions like gum disease are addressed before orthodontic treatment.
In some cases, more advanced 3-dimensional X-rays, such as cone beam scans, help us assess impacted teeth, joint problems, airway concerns, or the potential need for combined surgery and orthodontic intervention.
X-rays During Treatment:
Additional X-rays are often performed during the later stages of your orthodontic treatment. These provide vital information for bracket realignment, check the position of teeth and roots, and ensure treatment progress.
During the final stage of braces, Dr. Sohn makes precise adjustments for your best smile. X-rays confirm teeth alignment, allowing for these meticulous finishing touches.
After completing your orthodontic care, Dr. Sohn and our team review your results. The in-depth imaging from X-rays informs our retention strategy, ensuring your continued orthodontic success.
Monitoring unerupted wisdom teeth is crucial, as complications can arise. X-rays play a key role in preventing potential issues.
Orthodontic Radiography – What It Reveals:
X-rays provide essential information about various aspects of your orthodontic health, including:
- Wisdom Teeth – Monitoring Growth and Safety:
Wisdom teeth, also known as third molars, are notorious for causing problems in many patients. They often emerge late, misalign, or become impacted, potentially leading to pain and discomfort. By closely monitoring their growth, location, and sites of eruption through X-rays, we can assess the need for a referral to an oral surgeon. This proactive approach ensures the safety and well-being of our patients, preventing potential complications and preserving their oral health.
- Jaw Development – Guiding Proper Growth:
During adolescence, the bones of the jaw complete their normal growth pattern. For some patients, early orthodontic treatment may be necessary to address issues such as overcrowding or misalignment. X-rays play a crucial role in determining how the jaws are aligned relative to each other. On a growing patient, appliances like palatal expanders and headgear may be effective in preventing future problems. Our goal is to guide proper jaw development, ensuring a harmonious bite and long-term oral health.
- Unerupted Teeth – Early Detection of Impaction:
Tooth impaction occurs when a tooth doesn’t fully erupt through the gum. It can lead to infections, discomfort, and potential damage to adjacent teeth. X-rays allow us to detect unerupted teeth early on, providing the opportunity for timely intervention. By addressing impaction proactively, we can minimize the risk of complications and ensure that teeth emerge properly, contributing to a healthier and more functional smile.
- Tooth Position – Precision in Diagnosis and Treatment Planning:
The imaging capabilities of X-rays greatly enhance our ability to diagnose and plan your orthodontic treatment effectively. By assessing the proximity of your teeth to nerves and sinuses, we ensure a safe and precise treatment process. X-rays also reveal any anomalies such as badly developed, missing, or extra teeth. Additionally, they help us identify hidden issues like abscesses, cysts, or potential tumors. With this comprehensive view of your dental anatomy, we can tailor your treatment plan to address specific concerns, ensuring the best possible outcome.
- Gingivitis and Other Oral Diseases – Early Detection for Optimal Health:
X-rays play a vital role in the early detection of oral diseases such as gingivitis and hidden decay. They reveal any decay between the teeth or below existing fillings, ensuring that no dental issue goes unnoticed. Moreover, X-rays provide a clear picture of bone loss resulting from gum disease, allowing us to address these concerns promptly. By identifying oral diseases in their early stages, we can implement timely treatment and maintain your oral health.
The Comprehensive Benefits of Orthodontic X-rays:
We believe in the power of informed patients. By understanding the role of X-rays in orthodontic treatment, you’re better equipped to participate actively in your journey toward a healthier, more beautiful smile.
Orthodontic X-rays offer more than just diagnostic information; they provide a comprehensive view of your oral health. This detailed insight aids Dr. Sohn in making informed decisions throughout your orthodontic journey. It allows us to detect and address potential issues early, ensuring the most effective and efficient treatment plan tailored to your unique needs.
Call Today for More!
More questions? Or maybe you’re just in need of a family orthodontist? We’ve got you covered! Sohn Orthodontics is your one-stop shop for all your smile-related questions, concerns, and goals. We’re Bridgeville’s local favorite, and we can’t wait to show you why! Consultations are always free!