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Author Topic: X-Ray fears  (Read 288 times)

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Offline Silas1066

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X-Ray fears
« on: February 10, 2014, 06:48:44 PM »
I recently had a whole bunch of digital dental x-rays done. I had to have a root canal, and this alone accounted for 6-7 xrays.

I worry about radiation exposure. Who safe are these xrays? How much less radiation are the digital vs. regular?

Since I also had 3 CT scans of my sinuses years ago (needed sinus surgery because of a deviated septum, etc.), I am stressing about about radiation exposure. I wa up half the night thinking about it.
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Offline aec711

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2014, 09:07:39 PM »
HI,

I just wanted to let you know that I am an x-ray tech :)  With dental x-rays there is virtually little radiation. I have worked in radiation for 12 years (which is funny for a person with HA).  You get more radiation from the environment and even flying on airplanes than you would from even a chest x-ray which is a lot more radiation than dental xrays.  I was also a dental assistant before I went to xray school.  Usually, with a new patient we would do a full mouth full of x-rays (12-18).  They are very very safe - especially the digital xrays.  I hope you can relax (easier said than done - I know).  If you have any other questions just ask me! One more thing... we have patients at my hospital that come to the emergency department every other day - literally.  And it seems they get a chest x-ray every time.  One pt I have xrayed for the last 12 years.  He has had 100's if not 1000's of chest xrays and he still doesn't have cancer :)  I hope that makes you feel better too!
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Offline worrygirl789

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2014, 09:41:27 PM »
I recently has a cat scan and I have also been freaking out about radiation. I also have to get dental x rays and have not because of my fears :(
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Offline Kindra11

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2014, 10:36:23 PM »
I hope it makes Silas feel better because it answered a lot of things I was actually thinking about the other day! Thanks aec711!
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Offline aec711

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2014, 10:31:34 PM »
Thanks!!  Radiation is about the only thing I am not afraid of - and it is probably because I went to school for it for 4 years so I have some understanding. Whenever I see a post on here about x-rays/radiation I feel compelled to answer because of my HA and I know it helps when I get answers to my questions.  If anyone has any questions for me please feel free to ask :)
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Offline mhmommy

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2014, 11:39:30 PM »
do you think it's possible to get sick from pet/ct or
radiation induced cancer from high dose pet/ct ?
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Offline Bulan

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2014, 04:35:23 AM »
My doctor knows I lean towards 'natural' health management when possible, so when I recently told him about a worrisome localized pain in my lower back, he suggested doing six weeks of physiotherapy before going for an x-ray.

He said, if I don't see results in six weeks, then he'd definitely send me for the x-ray, but he wanted to save me the worry of exposing myself to radiation if it could be avoided.

The problem, for me, is that my health anxiety concerns cancer, many forms of which are identified by x-ray. So here I'm starting physio, worrying day in and day out whether there's actually a cancer growing inside me that we need to stop *now*. ... I wonder if I should just go ahead with the x-ray, even though I've had about 20 x-rays throughout my life (Several years ago, I had about 15 in one session, when I had persistent stomach pains).

So anyway, after reading this forum so far, I'm thinking, if the radiation from two or three x-rays really isn't a serious threat, maybe I should just go ahead with the x-rays now, rather than wait six weeks.

What would you do if you were in my shoes? :)
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Offline Sunlover

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2014, 12:56:17 PM »
HI,

I just wanted to let you know that I am an x-ray tech :)  With dental x-rays there is virtually little radiation. I have worked in radiation for 12 years (which is funny for a person with HA).  You get more radiation from the environment and even flying on airplanes than you would from even a chest x-ray which is a lot more radiation than dental xrays.  I was also a dental assistant before I went to xray school.  Usually, with a new patient we would do a full mouth full of x-rays (12-18).  They are very very safe - especially the digital xrays.  I hope you can relax (easier said than done - I know).  If you have any other questions just ask me! One more thing... we have patients at my hospital that come to the emergency department every other day - literally.  And it seems they get a chest x-ray every time.  One pt I have xrayed for the last 12 years.  He has had 100's if not 1000's of chest xrays and he still doesn't have cancer :)  I hope that makes you feel better too!

Thank you.  I too worry about these as I have had 5 root canals in my life so far and they REALLY do a lot of x-rays!  When I go to the dentist for a check up I always tell him, "No X-rays" (unless I had a tooth that was bothering me)  Luckily I have never had ANY other kind of X-ray.
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Offline Lunatone

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2014, 02:11:40 PM »
due to a genetic disorder, my teeth just... rotted and I couldnt stop it. But also cause of the disorder, it means that below the gumline, my teeth were nearly perfect. So I had to get all of my teeth ground down, drilled, root canaled, get posts implanted, have gum surgery, and then slowly get permanent caps set on top. All this over a couple years.. .I think. its kinda blurry.

I would get multiple X-rays each visit. Some visits lasted as long as six hours. So I have received probably hundreds more than most people, and I'm no worse for it. Really, the amount of radiation is quite small. A standard amount of radiation used in dental imaging is roughly equivalent to the amount of radiation you'd be exposed to over 12 days, just from background radiation.
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Offline aec711

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2014, 12:17:58 AM »
I really hope I can help ease everyone's fears over radiation.  I just had 3 dental xrays today and a root canal :(  The only thing I would say about the dental xrays is to make sure they use lead and pull it up over your neck to protect your thyroid - only because, like your reproductive organs - they are the most effected by radiation.  But honestly - a few xrays here are there are no big deal - in fact a few CT scans here and there are no big deal either.  Like I said - I have many repeat patients that have had 100's or thousands of xrays and CT scans of the years and they are still alive and kicking :)  We have such high standards when it comes to radiation protection.  With the use of lead when possible and the lowest dose possible - and digital imaging - xrays are safer than ever.  I also think that the benefit out weighs the risk when it comes to needed medical radiation.  I have worked in radiation for 12 years - I also work on surgery where I used a machine that shoots constant radiation called fluoroscopy.  I wear lead to protect myself and also wear a radiation monitor that gets checked every 90 days and then I get a report back saying how much radiation has gone to deep tissue - eyes - and shallow tissue.  In all the years I have worked - I have never even come close to the "allotted" amount of radiation.  I know there are so many stories out there that can be scary - but I have never really heard a case of medical radiation induced cancer or radiation sickness.  It is such a low low dose compared to say - radiation therapy where much higher amounts are used to kill cancer - there are possible side effects of radiation therapy - but I can tell you the dose of radiation from that is sooooooooooo much higher. Anyway, I hope that helped a little :)
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Offline Bulan

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2014, 02:06:43 AM »
Yes, it does help a little. I'll talk with my doctor about it then, thanks!

Also, you said:

I know there are so many stories out there that can be scary - but I have never really heard a case of medical radiation induced cancer or radiation sickness.

The stories I always heard were historical ones... how a previous generation (over 100 years ago, maybe?) treated things like skin conditions with x-rays, not knowing the risks. So the ended up with higher incidences of cancer as a result.

So that's what always concerned me... Along with the way x-ray technicians (even in dental offices) hide around the corner or behind a wall when the x-ray is being taken. I realize they have the risk of an occupational exposure to radiation, but that act of walking out of the room or looking at you from the other side of a window tends to plant ideas in one's head...   ::)
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Offline aec711

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Re: X-Ray fears
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2014, 10:38:43 AM »
Yes, it was from many years ago - in fact rich people used to purchase x-rays machines and use them at parties - there was no dose limitation and the machines produced a ton more radiation.  Yes, we stand behind the wall because we don't need the radiation.  Everyone knows that LARGE amounts of radiation is bad for you - and with me for example - 12 years - 5 days a week - 8 hours a day would be a lot of radiation to stand in all the time ;)
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