Advantages Of Dental Radiography And Concerns Surrounding It

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The dental radiography is often used to diagnose the pathology that cannot be visualized from the external. It commonly uses by the dentist around the world and every exposure is emitted the radiation. For this reason, the dose for the patient need to limited therefore the dentists need to have the good attitude towards the patient. The as low as reasonably achievable or ALARA is then applied as well as the guild line from the American Dental Associate Council that recommend on film speed, collimator and lead apron. Even the dose of the dental radiograph is low, but need to consider the accumulation dose which may have stochastic effect that lead to deadly disease in the future. There are many ways to reduce the dose in the dental radiograph, the lead apron and they thyroid shield which have the available thickness of 0.5 mm to 0.25mm whereas the 0.25mm thickness can attenuates approximately 96% of the dose.

The collimator that being used on the patient which rectangle or the rounded collimator and film speed which the faster the film, the lesser exposure it needs. As show the D-speed film is slower than the E-speed film. Even the knowledge of the dentist also is one of the factors or even sometimes the dentists neglect due to any kind of situation or factor. The purpose of this review is to show how awareness of the dentists on the radiation protection and the attitude towards the safety of the exposure as well as their knowledge on the radiation protection that need to applied on the patient according to As Low As Reasonably Achievable (ALARA) principle and according to American Dental Association council’s recommendation.


There are five different questionnaires that conducted related to the same topic which each one of them was collected in different countries for more reliable. The questionnaires were conduct on the participants of the 48th Annual Congress of the Iranian Dental Association about the act and behaviors of the dentist about the safety of the radiation to meet up standard. 700 were given back from 1000 of it. The questions were asking about standard radiation protection, techniques used, equipment used, exposure factor, patient and the personal protection and handling the waste from the procedure. Then on the Swedish dentist the questionnaires were randomly given to 2000 subject. The questionnaires were asking about the knowledge and the behavior for the way to minimize the dose for patients, types of film that being used and the collimator. For another test was conducted randomly from the name list of the Swedish Dental Society, questionnaire was sent thru email to 2000 people which 69.3% was doing the questionnaire.

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The question mainly focused on the attitude of dentist towards the radiation threat. As in India, the questionaire was giving to 80 dentist from Davangere city in India asking about the technique that being used, equipment and the radiation protection. The last one was conducted on Michigan dentists which questionnaire was giving to 398 of them which 67% was givien back answer. The questionnaire were related to the American Dental Association Council’s recommendation. Meaning that 5478 questonaire was sent to the dentist which 3950 was response from participations.


For the Iranian dentists, the 44% of them using periapical view as standard technique, while 12% of them use periapical parallel technique. For the receptor and film, 62% of them is using the E-speed film and 9% is using the F-speed film and only2% that is using digital receptor. The correct exposure factor was chosen correctly by only 26.5%. 15% of them reposed that they are using rectangular collimator and 6% using the rounded collimator. 34% covered the patients with lead apron and thyroid shield sometime. For personal protection 36% of them using the correct distance rule correctly. The correct waste disposed for lead foil only #% of them done correctly. For the Swedish dentist the questionnaire was only asking about film and collimation. Their responded saying that 52% of them using D-speed film and 47% of them using E-speed film. For the collimator, 42% of them was using rounded open-ended collimator and only 29% was using rectangular collimators.

For the attitude towards the radiation hazard for another questionnaire was showing the high concern of the radiation hazard as well as the use of the x-ray. But for dentists which have lower in experience were showing less concern towards the hazard. For the Indian dentist, 27.7% of them cannot get the correct exposure factors. The long and rectangular collimators were using in 11% and 5% of them respectively. For the film speed, 74% of them are using E-speed film and 2% of them were using F-speed film and 4% of them were using D-speed film. For the lead apron 61% of them was not using the lead apron on patient and all of them did not have thyroid shield. For the American dentists, 73% of them were using D-speed film. For the collimator 90% of them using rounded collimator only 5% using rectangular collimator. For the patient protection, 87% of them was giving lead apron to the patient but only 49% of them using the thyroid shield for the patient.


The majority of the dentists mostly answer almost the same way even though the research and questionnaire were conducted in different parts of the world. For the Iranian, the problem is selecting the correct exposure factor, even the technique as well as equipment. Since the selections of all materials and method were not correct meaning that the patient would have get unnecessary radiation. As well as the attitude of the Swedish dentist which need to change their perspective but as far as the research shown the respondents were shown the afford to the awareness of the radiation but there is different between the experience dentists and inexperience dentists which experience dentists had shown more awareness toward the radiation protection and knowledge about it.

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