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The Importance of Pediatric Dental X-Rays

Child getting an x-ray of their baby teeth

Dental X-rays are an essential tool for finding and treating issues that kids might have with their teeth, like dental cavities. We recommend that X-rays of their baby teeth be taken as part of their checkup every six months as part of their checkup if cavities are a concern. As a preventative measure, they’re typically covered entirely or almost completely by insurance.

If your child is complaining of a toothache, it may be time for an X-ray. And if you live in the greater Reno area, your local pediatric dentist is Tooth Fairy Dental.

Does My Child Need X-rays?

The main reason for baby teeth x-rays are preventive purposes. When a pediatric dentist looks at a childrens teeth x-ray, they’re not just looking at the teeth. They’re trying to see if there are any underlying problems that were not detected in a visual exam and cleaning. Children may even have missing teeth or extra teeth that only an X-ray will show. The better a pediatric dentist can identify these variables, the better they can serve your child down the line.

Assess Ongoing Issues

If your child is presenting the signs of an oral infection, an X-ray may be necessary to identify the source of the issue, whether it’s gingivitis, a cracked tooth, or something else. Also, if your child has sustained a mouth injury, X-rays can help monitor healing and recovery.

Another reason for a children’s teeth x-ray is to assess any ongoing issues or see if your child needs orthodontic treatment. Using braces to adjust the alignment of your child or teenager’s teeth often leads to better results when they’re young.

Follow Up X-Rays

A third reason to x-ray your baby’s teeth is to follow up on a procedure. If we helped your child fix a cracked tooth or remedied an injury, we may need to have a follow up x-ray to see how that particular site is doing. Every procedure that we do at Toothfairy Pediatric Dental has a set of outcomes that we look out for. A follow up x-ray lets us know when we’ve hit that target in healing.

The Process For Your Baby Teeth X-Rays

An X-ray is a very simple procedure. We use a specialized apparatus that can deliver the beam on an adjustable plane. We can get the X-ray right up close to your child’s cheek with no discomfort. Think of a bendy lamp that can move in multiple directions from a fixed lever arm. It’s the same thing with a children’s teeth X-ray.

The amount of time it’ll take to get the X-rays done depends on how many X-rays need to be taken. Generally speaking, it never takes more than a few minutes. If you have any questions regarding your children’s teeth X-ray, or the amount of time it would take, feel free to contact us so you can talk to a qualified professional.

When Should My Child Get X-Rays?

Having a baseline teeth X-ray taken on your baby’s first pediatric dental visit is a good place to start. This is especially true if your child is at high risk for early cavities or shows signs of any other potential complication. Depending on the way your child’s teeth are developing, dental X-rays can be ordered as frequently as twice a year or as little as once every few years. This really is at the discretion of the pediatric dentist.


What’s the purpose of dental X-rays for baby teeth?

Dental X-rays are used to detect a wide variety of potential oral health issues. They can show cavities, abnormalities in the teeth or jaw, potential infections, and orthodontic growth care.

What should my child and I expect?

X-rays are a very straightforward process. We’ll seat your child in the dentist’s chair and drape a lead apron over them while we take the X-rays. We use a small, flexible piece of plastic with a special film and place it in your child’s mouth, between the teeth. Then we take X-rays from multiple angles to ensure a comprehensive view.

Do X-rays hurt?

Not at all! X-rays are a safe, painless procedure. We take care to ensure your child’s comfort and relaxation throughout the entire process.

How often should my child get X-rays?

This will vary completely from child to child. Some children receive X-rays twice per year while others only get them every few years. It depends on if your child has an ongoing oral health condition or if they’re at high risk for tooth decay. Your pediatric dentist will give you a timeline appropriate for your child.

Do I get a copy of my child’s X-rays?

If you’d like, we’re happy to provide you with a copy for your personal records.

Why Choose Toothfairy Pediatric Dental? 

We make sure that every aspect of your visit is tailored to your child. We have state of the art equipment on-site so that we can perform every procedure necessary to give your child the smile they deserve. If you have a child that is uncooperative or a child with special needs, we have trained staff and highly experienced pediatric dentists that can handle any situation. At Toothfairy Pediatric Dental, we want to put both you and your child at ease. This allows us to do our jobs efficiently so that you and your child can spend the rest of the day having fun.

If you think your baby’s teeth x-rays are overdue, we encourage you to make an appointment with us. We have several locations in and around the Reno area with dedicated staff to help. Call or email us and ask about bilingual staff to help translate. 

Our Reno offices are proud to accept Medicaid on top of most dental insurance policies. We’ve got you covered.

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