Dear Pi Patient:
We often receive concern from patients regarding the standard recommendations that are made at the Pi Dental Center. One area of concern is dental radiographs. The American Dental Association recommends updating full-mouth intraoral series of radiographs every three to five years for accurate diagnosis. Bite-wing radiographs are recommended to be taken on an annual basis. For patients with implant restorations only, we prefer to take an updated panoramic radiograph on an annual basis, with supplemental films if necessary.
These radiographs are essential to monitor bone levels, and to rule out any pathology in the jawbones or in the teeth. The radiographs that are used have very limited radiation exposure and the value far outweighs the risk. When we are able to catch areas of decay early, we can do simple treatment as opposed to more complex and costly procedures. It is in the patient’s best interest to keep updated radiographs and to follow the standard recommendations set forth by The American Dental Association.
Another area of concern is the recommendation for crowns. In some instances, patients prefer to be much more conservative and simply do a filling. Fillings are indicated in areas of small decay where the structural integrity of the tooth is not severely compromised. In areas where a large portion of the tooth is missing and where the tooth is severely weakened, and in most situations where root canal treatment has been done, crowns are indicated on those teeth to properly restore form and function.
Please be assured that at Pi Dental Center we are extremely interested in providing the most conservative treatment indicated without compromising the results. The recommendations we make to our patients are essential to maintaining a healthy oral condition and to limiting dental emergencies.
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Glenn J. Wolfinger, DMD, FACP