Radiation is the transmission or emission of energy in a wave or particle form as it passes through a material medium. The imaging done in a dentists’ office falls into the ionizing radiation category. This process is used for many applications, including sterilizing medical equipment, food, and for some types of treatment.
What Does Ionizing Radiation Do?
There are two types of radiation: ionizing and non-ionizing. X-rays belong to the former category. Ionizing radiation contains enough energy to cause electrons to detach from atoms or molecules. Non-ionizing radiation does not contain enough energy to cause detachment.
Is X-Ray Exposure Dangerous for the Patient?
We are exposed to natural background radiation from the sun on a daily basis. Radiation exposure from dental X-rays is minimal. Four bitewings are equivalent to less than one day of natural background radiation exposure.
The American Dental Association recommends dental X-rays once every two years for healthy patients who are not having issues.
Is X-Ray Exposure Dangerous for the Technician?
X-ray technicians should always use proper safety precautions when taking imagines. They are exposed more often than the average patient because this is part of their day to day job.
Those who do not wear safety gear and follow proper procedure could experience physical side effects like high blood pressure, hair loss, body pain, and skin irritation. Everyone who handles or works around X-rays should be aware of how to do so without increasing the risk of damage to their bodies. Radiation safety training should be provided to prevent accidental or excessive exposure.
Register today for Strategic Practice Solutions upcoming State Approved Dental X-Ray Certification class for the Dental Assistant.
Contact us to learn more.