Are Dental X-Rays Safe?

Understanding X-Rays

xraysX-rays are one of the most important diagnostic tools at any dentist’s office. Getting your regular x-rays is the only way to be sure that you don’t have any tooth decay that needs to be taken care of.

But, considering the dangers of radiation, are x-rays a worthwhile risk? This is a common concern, so Overlake Dental in Bellevue wants our patients have the important facts they need to feel safe during their normal dental appointments.

“X-rays, also known as radiographs, are an essential part of any dental care treatment plan. They are diagnostic, but they can also be preventative, by helping a dentist diagnose potential oral care issues in a patient’s mouth before they become a major problem. An x-ray is a type of energy that passes through soft tissues and is absorbed by dense tissue. Teeth and bone are very dense, so they absorb X-rays, while X-rays pass more easily through gums and cheeks.

X-rays are divided into two main categories, intraoral and extraoral. Intraoral is an X-ray that is taken inside the mouth. An extraoral X-ray is taken outside of the mouth.

Intraoral X-rays are the most common type of radiograph taken in dentistry. They give a high level of detail of the tooth, bone and supporting tissues of the mouth.”


The first thing to realize is that the amount of radiation you are subjected to with modern dental x-ray machines is exceptionally minimal. Advances in x-ray technology allow us to get an effective image of your teeth quickly and efficiently.

Machines operating at a higher speed let us capture a picture with a very short exposure period, and more limited x-ray beams focus the radiation only on where it is needed. Along with the advances in dental technology, you also enjoy the protection lead-lined aprons.

In short, the small amount of radiation that you are exposed to is easily worth the benefits you get from an occasional dental x-ray.