Modern dental x-ray machines can take an x-ray picture of all of your teeth in just one picture. While we still need to occasionally get close ups of a tooth root or look very closely between teeth, the “panoramic” x-ray has greatly reduced the need for dozens of “intra-oral” close-ups (periapicals or bitewings). And no thorough dental exam is complete without this x-ray information. Again, we are not just looking for cavities but also tumors, infections, fractures, and systemic diseases signs too. Modern digital dental x-rays use a tiny fraction of radiation compared to hospital x-rays or Cat-scans. Dental x-rays are barely more than what is known as “background radiation” that we normally get from the sun outdoors!