Is Dental X-ray Cost Worth It in the Long Run?

The exact rates of dental X-rays varies based on factors like your location and your dentist. If you live in a high-cost-of-living area, you can expect to pay a higher price for your X-rays. On the other hand, if you live in an inexpensive area, your X-rays probably won't cost as much.

The type of X-ray you need also affects the price. There are different types of dental X-rays, depending on the view your dentist needs. Bite-wing X-rays show your dentist the crowns of your back teeth, and one or two X-rays are taken for each side of the mouth. Sharecare explains that a single X-ray may cost between $15 to $25.

Bitewing X-rays will cost between $50 to $100. Panoramic X-rays give the dentist a broad view of your entire mouth. These X-rays can cost anywhere between $100 to $200.

To find out exactly how much your X-rays will cost, ask your dentist. Your dentist can give you a quote based on the type of X-rays, number of images needed, and other factors. Most dental insurance covers the cost of X-rays, so you may not have to pay much or anything out-of-pocket if you're insured. If you're not insured, ask your dentist about payment plans or other options.

Save Money on X-Rays with Preventative Care

Your dentist can't see your whole mouth during an oral examination. The areas between your teeth, inside your teeth, or under your gums are hidden from sight. If there are any problems in these areas, your dentist won't see them without doing an X-ray. By performing an X-ray, hidden issues can be discovered at an early stage.

For example, your dentist could discover a small cavity between two of your teeth. Untreated, that cavity could get worse, and you could eventually need a root canal or an extraction which can be more expensive. When treated early, a simple filling may be all you need. Getting issues fixed at an early stage is less expensive than getting them fixed later, when they've gotten much worse.

To help prevent cavities, remember to brush your teeth twice a day with a toothpaste like Colgate Total Clean Mint. The fluoride formula strengthens teeth to help prevent cavities. Don't forget to floss once a day as well.

Plan for Future Dental Expenses

Have you ever been caught off guard by a large expense? It's not a good feeling, especially when you're already on a tight budget. Dental X-rays can help you plan for future large dental expenses for yourself or your kids, rather than being surprised later.

For example, when you get X-rays, your dentist could discover that your children will need their wisdom teeth removed in the future. The American Dental Association explains that this usually happens between the ages of 17 and 21. This advance warning gives you time to start saving for the treatment. Removing four impacted wisdom teeth can cost up to $4,000, which is a big bill if you're not ready. Thanks to your X-rays, you'll have some time to adjust your budget.

Dental X-rays could also show that your kids will need braces. Braces are another expensive treatment, but again, you'll have some time to plan and save. This makes the initial dental X-ray cost well worth it.

While the cost of dental X-rays may seem high, it's well worth it. It's a small investment that helps you avoid expensive dental care later, or plan for future dental expenses.

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X-RAY Procedure

X-rays are typically performed in the office of a dentist or dental specialist. Here is what to expect:

  1. Preparation – first a dental professional will cover you with a heavy lead apron to protect your body from the radiation. Next the dental professional will insert a small apparatus, made of plastic, into your mouth and ask you to bite down on it.

  2. Execution – the technician will then proceed to take an X-ray picture of the targeted area. This process is pain-free and will be repeated until images have been obtained for your entire mouth.