5 Surprising Benefits of Dental X-Rays

Regular dental care is an invaluable asset to your quality of life. Dentists do more than clean your teeth and fix your smile. They play a crucial role in the overall well-being of every single patient they see.

One way dentists do this is by using x-rays to help them identify issues, plan a course of action, and follow-up on treatment. If you don’t mind going to the dentist, but you’re not a fan of taking x-rays, keep reading to discover 5 awesome benefits of dental x-rays.

1. To Track Tooth Growth and Development

Have you ever broken a bone then watched the progress of its healing with regular x-rays? It’s pretty cool to see, isn’t it?

In a similar way, dentists use x-rays to track healthy tooth growth and development. They can do this with their own eyes too, but only to a certain extent. Advanced medical equipment helps them assess the situation from all angles.

With just one set of x-rays, a dentist can see if your teeth are prone to crowding or tooth gaping. From there, they may consult with you to receive some sort of orthodontic treatment.

2. To Identify Dental Decay

The next benefit of dental x-rays worth mentioning is to identify decay. This is a serious matter worth treating as soon as possible. The growth of decay in your mouth can lead to gum disease, rotten teeth, or other health issues in the body.

If you want to keep bacteria from spreading, you need to catch it in action right away. You need to allow the dentist to take the necessary x-rays.

3. To Check for Gum Disease

Maybe it’s too late for you to identify the presence of dental decay early on. Maybe you’re already suffering from bleeding or inflamed gums and wondering what to do about it.

The best thing you can do is call your dentist who will likely require x-rays to aid in determining the severity of your potential Gum Disease. Most dentists can identify gum disease from a mile away. But, it’s only with an up-close look and support of x-rays that they can see the root of the problem and start planning a cure.

4. To Assure Treatment Success

It’s one thing to plan a course of action for dental treatment and another to see it through. As such, dentists often take follow-up x-rays to assure their work is complete. Some will even take x-rays at each stage of treatment to track progress.

This may mean you have two or three sets of x-rays done or maybe even four or five. However many times you’re asked to take them, always comply. The more x-rays a dentist has to compare, the better they can do their job and bring you back to good health.

5. To Act Quickly on Dental Issues

Speaking of bringing you to good health, at the end of the day, a dentist can’t do this if you don’t let them. It’s not enough to go in for cleanings and keep up with flossing at home.

You’re going to have to take x-rays from time to time to make sure your dental health is as good as you think it is. Not to mention, if something is wrong, you’ll be glad you took the x-rays sooner rather than later.

Discover the Benefits of Dental X-Rays for Yourself

Dental x-rays are nothing to fear or cause a fuss over. They’re incredibly safe, and although a little uncomfortable, quick to do when you follow directions.

The most important rule of going to the dentist, though, is to actually go! If it’s been a while since you sat in the dentist’s chair and you need to make an appointment, click here to set one up with us right away.

Dental X-Rays – Are They Dangerous?

X-ray image.

Dental x-rays are usually used as a diagnostic procedure and it is considered safe as they have really low doses of radiation and produces just a small fraction of what other imaging procedures exposes you to. If you think you are going to need dental x-rays or if you are worried about getting one because of your medical condition, you should read on to know more about dental x-rays – why they are done and more.


What are dental x-rays for?

Dentists use dental x-rays to see issues that would otherwise be invisible to the naked eye. Patients get dental x-rays if their dentist needs to detect and treat some issues that include areas of decay that are not visible, bone loss, abscesses, tumors, and more. Without an x-ray, these problems and more could go undiagnosed and get worse. Using x-ray as a reference, dentists are able to prepare treatments such as dentures, dental implants, braces, and others.


Are dental x-rays safe for children and pregnant women?

Some parents are concerned that dental x-rays may affect their children’s health as children are more sensitive to radiation. But you don’t have to worry because the amount of radiation that comes from a dental x-ray is still considered safe even for a child. Why would your child need a dental x-ray? Sometimes it is necessary to know for sure whether a child’s primary teeth are loosening the right way so new permanent teeth would come out properly, too.

As for pregnant women, it is generally advised that they avoid dental x-rays. Even if the radiation is very minimal, it’s still best to avoid any exposure at all for the health of the fetus developing inside the body. It is important that you inform your dentist if you are or you may be pregnant before getting any dental treatment, especially if you believe a dental x-ray may be required.


At Pickering Square Dental, we always do a careful clinical evaluation of our patients to minimize the need for dental x-rays. Note, however, that there are certain dental issues that would only be diagnosed using dental x-rays. If you want to know more about dental x-rays or if you need to discuss whether or not you need one, do not hesitate to reach out to us. We can help you understand why it may be necessary for improving your oral health.

Do You Need a Periodontist?

Patient at dentists office, getting teeth examined with hand-held mirror and cleaned of tartar and plaque, preventing periodontal disease. Dental hygiene, painful procedures and prevention concept.

Every year, millions of people around the world are affected by periodontal disease or gum disease. In fact, it is one of the leading causes of tooth loss among adults. One major concern is that most people do not realize that they have gum disease until they experience severe pain or they actually loose teeth. This is because there are very few symptoms of gum disease, especially in its early stages.


How Does Gum Disease Begin?

The problem starts when bacteria build up between teeth and along the gum line. As this happens, very few symptoms – if any- are visible or are felt. When bacteria continue to multiply, they can cause the gums to pull away from teeth. When the gum recedes, more of the tooth gets exposed to plaque and bacteria get even closer to the root as they get below the gum line. It is at this stage that tooth loss can happen.

When gum disease reaches an advanced stage, it may still be treated but the treatments would be more extensive and much more costly. It is therefore important that it gets caught as early as possible. Visiting your trusted dentist at Pickering Square Dental regularly is the best way to know for sure that your teeth and gums are healthy.


There are also a number of signs and symptoms that tell you that you need to see a periodontist:

* Gums are swollen, red, and bleeding, especially when you are brushing your teeth and flossing.

* Gums are receding. There may also be deep pockets between teeth and gums.

* There is an unpleasant taste in the mouth which tends to return even after you brush your teeth.

* You have chronic bad breath.

* Your teeth are moving and shifting out of their former alignment. They may also feel loose.

* You feel pressure or even pain when you are eating. This is because when there is infection around the tooth root, the pressure caused by biting food and chewing can result in discomfort or even pain.

* Your teeth are more sensitive to hot or cold food and beverages than usual. You feel more sensitivity as more of the roots of your teeth are exposed.


If you are noticing one or more of these symptoms, you should make an appointment with Pickering Square Dental so we can evaluate the condition of your teeth and gums. Remember that early detection is the key to fighting gum disease and saving your teeth!

Dental Care Resolutions You Really Need To Stick To

Beautiful young parents and their cute little daughter are looking at camera and smiling while brushing teeth, against gray wall

Did you know that only about 8% of people actually achieve their New Year’s resolution? This can be attributed to a lot of factors, including unrealistic expectations regarding the ease, the speed, and the consequences of their resolutions.

What can you do then? Make more reasonable goals, of course! Because we want you to enjoy healthy and beautiful smile all year, here are some dental resolutions that you can easily stick to:

Brush and Floss Twice a Day

Well, you should already be doing this and you probably are. But there are probably a few times last year when you skipped brushing and flossing because you were a little too busy, sleepy, lazy, or distracted. Make sure that this year, nothing comes between you and your brush and floss!

Lessen Your Sugar Intake

Let us not kid ourselves. It is really hard to completely stop eating and drinking sugar. But it will greatly help if you at least aim to reduce your intake of sweets. It may also be time for you to discover healthier alternatives! While you lessen your sugar intake, increase your intake of water and make sure you rinse your mouth after eating sweets.

Break Your Bad Habits

Unfortunately, some of the things you like doing, like drinking coffee every so often and smoking can be really bad for your teeth. Not only do these habits stain your teeth, but they can even damage your gums and cause oral cancer! For these reasons alone, you should be working really hard to drop these habits. It can be really challenging, but your dentist and your physician can surely provide you with helpful suggestions on what you can do to beat your chemical dependency.

Get Checked for Oral Cancer

So, this is not really a resolution that you have to repeatedly do but one that you just have to do at least once this 2018. Then you can have it done next year again! Thousands of Canadians suffer from oral cancer. Most oral cancer cases are treatable as long as they are detected and treated early. Advanced tools can now be used to check your mouth for signs of inflammation and bumps that could be an early sign of oral cancer. Ask for a screening on your next dental appointment!

Set a Schedule and Stick to It

One of the best things you can do for your oral health this year is not just making an appointment with your dentist, but actually sticking to it. Your dentist is the one person who understands your needs when it comes to your oral health – even more than you do. Regular visits can help ensure that you won’t suffer from any problems in the near future.

These are pretty simple things that you can do for your oral health. And trust us – what you’ll get in return is all worth it.

Want to make 2018 the year where you got your best smile ever? Give Pickering Square Dental a call and set an appointment. We’ll be your partner in this very achievable goal!

Serious Health Risks Directly Linked to Your Oral Health… What to Do This New Year

caucasian woman tGingivitis portrait isolated studio on white background

Even when you regularly brush your teeth, there still may be some dangerous bacteria living inside your mouth. Thinking about it instantly gives visuals of extreme pain in your gums and perhaps bleeding. While periodontitis is indeed an inevitable result of poor oral hygiene, certain studies found a link between poor dental hygiene and some major health concerns.


Here are some serious health issues that are connected with your oral hygiene:


  1. Gum Disease May Lead to Coronary Artery Disease

Yes, those who suffer from periodontitis are more likely to develop coronary artery disease. Some researchers say that it is possible that harmful bacteria from the mouth could enter the bloodstream. Once it does, it can attach to some fatty plaques in your heart’s blood vessels. This can lead to inflammation and later on, trigger heart attacks.


  1. Your Memory May Also Be Affected

There are some researches that suggest a tie between poor oral condition and a higher risk of dementia. Experts believe that similar to how it happens with coronary artery diseases; oral bacteria may also reach the brain through cranial nerves and the bloodstream. It may also contribute to the specific type of plaque that has been connected to Alzheimer’s disease.


  1. It Has an Effect on Your Blood Sugar

Those with diabetes, in particular, are more prone to periodontal disease than those who do not. Perhaps the fact that diabetes patients are highly susceptible to infections is a factor. Additionally, research shows that gum disease could also make controlling your blood sugar more difficult. Treating it also improves one’s symptoms.


  1. You May Be at Risk of Getting Respiratory Infections

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, as well as pneumonia, may be caused by the inhalation of some harmful bacteria from your mouth into the lungs and result to inflammation of the airways.


  1. Your Fertility May Be Affected

Researchers in Western Australia discovered that for women with gum disease, it took an average of two months longer than usual to conceive. Additionally, gum disease in pregnant women increases the risk of having a miscarriage.

Because of these more serious risks, it is only expected that you’d be more interested in caring for the health of your mouth. To achieve a healthier mouth, you’d want to:


  • Use mouthwash twice a day to reduce the risk of gum disease by an astounding 60%.
  • Choose a toothbrush with really soft bristles.
  • Floss before you brush your teeth to remove any food remnants.
  • Brush for at least two full minutes to thoroughly clean your teeth and mouth.


Just follow these expert tips and you’ll maintain not only really fresh breath, but also a healthier and stronger body.

The Importance of Brushing and Flossing

Ever since we were young, we have always taught how important brushing and flossing our teeth are. Despite the many reminders, we still, at times, forget to maintain a proper healthy oral routine. Here are a few reminders on the importance of these two acts:

Brushing Our Teeth
Plaque is a colourless film of bacteria that coats your teeth if you do not brush them properly and on a regular basis. Plaque contributes to tooth decay and gum diseases. Brushing the teeth stops plaque from building up. When you brush your teeth, you are also helping your mouth smell fresh and clean. It is never enough to just chew gum and it definitely does not kill any bacteria. People who do not brush their teeth on a regular basis are more prone to having tooth loss and other dental problems.

Proper Way of Brushing the Teeth
When brushing the teeth, make sure that you brush all the surfaces of your teeth – in total, it should take you no less than about two minutes. It is a must to brush the inner and outer tooth surfaces, as well as the chewing surfaces of your teeth. Children should be supervised when brushing their teeth until they are at least seven years old. It is important to spit out any excess toothpaste after brushing. Using a mouthwash that contains fluoride can be an aid in preventing tooth decay, but do not use it immediately after brushing your teeth. Doing so, washes away the concentrated fluoride in the toothpaste left on your teeth.

Flossing the Teeth
Flossing is an act that is often neglected but is a vital part in maintaining proper dental health. By flossing daily, you can remove plaque that is stuck between your teeth. This is an area that cannot be reached by your toothbrush. Unless the plaque is removed from this area, it can contribute to the build-up of tartar, cavities and other dental concerns. Flossing is also one of the things that most people do not enjoy doing. It’s something that is so easy to do, yet equally easy to neglect and put-off. Just like toothbrushes, dental flosses come in different sizes, types and flavours and worth finding one that each family member likes.

Proper Way of Flossing the Teeth
Flossing is not just for dislodging the food wedged between your teeth and plaque. It helps in reducing bad breath and gum diseases by removing plaque that forms along and under the gum line. The best time to floss is before brushing the teeth. Take 12-18 inches (30-45cm) of floss and grasp it so you have a couple of inches between your hands. Slip the floss between the teeth and into the areas between your teeth and gums – as far as it will go without forcing it. Floss with 8-10 strokes, up and down between each tooth, to dislodge plaque and food.

Maintain a healthy oral routine now in order to avoid more complex dental conditions and issues in the future!