Sign In  |  Register  |  About Livermore  |  Contact Us

Livermore, CA
September 01, 2020 1:25pm
7-Day Forecast | Traffic
  • Search Hotels in Livermore

  • ROOMS:

2 Changes You May Notice at Your Next Dentist Appointment


SPONSORED CONTENT -- (StatePoint) Practices in oral and overall health care continually advance to keep you well. Here are two changes affecting dental care you might notice at your next visit.

1. Updated recommendations for dental X-rays. In the past, when your dentist took X-rays of your teeth, you probably wore a leaded apron or thyroid collar. That may change with your next visit.

According to 2024 safety recommendations by an expert panel of dentists at the American Dental Association (ADA), abdominal and thyroid shielding is no longer needed for patients of all ages and health statuses (like pregnancy). These tools can block the main X-ray beam. When this happens, additional X-rays may be needed, something your dentist wants to avoid.

To get the best images of your teeth, your dentist or dental team will make sure you are properly positioned for your X-rays and that the beam is focused on the area of interest. Shielding may still be used in some practices due to local regulations, so ask your dentist if you have any questions about X-rays.

ADA experts also recommend that X-rays be taken only when your dentist believes they will provide the necessary diagnostic information to help you reach your best dental health. Dental X-rays emit very low doses of radiation, which makes the risk of experiencing potentially harmful effects very small. Still, taking X-rays in moderation lessens radiation exposure.

2. New guidelines to manage dental pain. If you see your dentist for a tooth extraction, recent guidelines endorsed by the ADA recommend that you be prescribed a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) such as ibuprofen or naproxen to manage short-term dental pain.

When used as directed, on their own or in combination with acetaminophen, NSAIDs are an appropriate and effective way to manage the inflammatory pain that comes after a tooth extraction or during a toothache when dental care is not immediately available. This guidance applies to patients of every age.

In the unlikely event that your pain does not improve after the second or third day following your procedure, return to your dentist to rule out complications or other sources of pain.

In limited circumstances, an opioid prescription may be appropriate for patients 12 and older, though dentists should use extreme caution when prescribing opioids to those 12 to 17-years-old. When discussing options to treat your dental pain, inform your dentist of your history with opioids and any factors that may contribute to dependence on or misuse of such medication.

If your dentist prescribes opioids for pain management, the guidelines recommend that you be given the lowest effective dose, with the fewest tablets and for a short period. “Just in case” prescriptions are not recommended, and your dentist should instruct you on the proper storage and disposal of the medication.

To search for an ADA dentist in your area, visit Learn more about caring for your smile at, the ADA’s website for oral health education.

Oral health guidelines change over time with advancements in technology and data regarding best practices to enhance patient safety and well-being. With any change, your dentist’s priority remains the same: to provide you with the best dental care possible. Talk to your dentist if you have any questions about the latest recommendations in oral health.


Photo Credit: (c) XtockImages / iStock via Getty Images Plus

Data & News supplied by
Stock quotes supplied by Barchart
Quotes delayed at least 20 minutes.
By accessing this page, you agree to the following
Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.
Copyright © 2010-2020 & California Media Partners, LLC. All rights reserved.