Dental Practitioner: Dental Radiographs Essay

Dental Practitioner: Dental Radiographs Essay

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Dental radiographs are commonly taken to assist dental practitioners for further diagnosis. Dental radiographs are images produced on an image receptor with a passage of high energy electromagnetic radiation and radio waves that penetrates through teeth and it the relating structure (Iannucci, JM & Howerton, LJ 2012).The deliberation of electromagnetic radiation and radio waves raises concerns in regards to how radiation affects cells in the body and the composition of the nucleus. Sue Raye’s dentist requested radiographs for herself and her family, since dental radiographs involves radiosensitive the head and neck tissues area it raises concerns for her and family’s safety. Is it safe for her and her family to have dental radiographs taken without effects associated with x-radiation? Especially Xavier whose only five years of age.

Sue’s concern upon radiation and its effect on cells are very common. Ionised radiation can harm cells both directly and indirectly by either macromolecules or water molecules within the cell, which is explained further (Mettler, FA & Moseley RD, 1985).

Direct effect
A direct effect of ionised radiation occurs within 10-16 of a second. (Iannucci, JM & Howerton, LJ 2012. Pg. 36).) When a photon or electron disrupts the DNA (deoxyribose nucleic acid) or RNA molecule, it causes breakage of the sugar phosphate backbone or hydrogen bonding within DNA that originates via ionising radiation (Mettler, FA & Moseley RD, 1985. pg. 13). As a result the photon or electron affects the DNA or RNA and alters the molecular bonds, which may possibly prevent it from reproducing and potentially replicate properly (Mettler, FA & Moseley RD, 1985. pg.13).

Indirect effect
Indirect damage is where by surrounding molecule...

... middle of paper ...

...asts: a mechanistic study, The FASEB Journal. (Accessed 19 April 2014).

Wagner LK & Eifel PJ, RA Geise. 2008. Potential Biological Effects Following High X-ray Dose Interventional Procedures . [ONLINE] Available at: (Accessed 17 April 2014).

Whaites, E 2007, Essentials of Dental Radiography and Radiology, 3th edn, Churchill Livingstone Elsevier (accessed on the 18th of April).
What Is Ionizing Radiation? 2013. What Is Ionizing Radiation?. [ONLINE] Available at: (Accessed 19 April 2014).

White, GW, 1922. Oral Radiology Principles and interpretation. 3rd ed. United States of America: George Stamathis. (Accessed 17 April 2014).

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