Teeth are very complex, and in many cases, it is impossible to see everything that is going on with a tooth by the naked eye. Routine x-rays are recommended so that we can diagnose interproximal tooth decay (cavities in between your teeth) because it is impossible for us otherwise to see in between your back teeth. By taking these routine x-rays, we are able to identify normal-size cavities before they become large cavities, so that fillings can be done before a tooth becomes infected which then requires a root canal or extraction. X-rays are also necessary so that we can see the anatomy of the roots of your teeth. Teeth have large roots below the surface of your gums and the roots can only be seen via x-ray. We need to take x-rays to identify abscessed teeth, to check the anatomy of the roots prior to tooth extraction, and to verify the total health of your teeth every 5 years or so. Rest assured that we do everything we can to minimize your radiation exposure, and that we only take the least amount of x-rays that are needed for your situation to provide you with the best possible dental care. We also have all digital radiography which drastically reduces the amount of radiation that you are exposed to.