3D digital technology is mentioned everywhere and dentistry is no exception.
Hospital CT’s have enabled excellent 3D images using multidirectional xrays fired at the patient. The drawback particularly in dentistry has been the relatively high radiation dosage. Cone
beam 3D CT has arrived in dentistry because the dosage can be 1/10 of the hospital CT scans.
Radiation has the potential to cause cellular disruption and the more a patient is exposed the higher the risks of cancers etc. in the future. It is very difficult to escape radiation entirely as it comes from many everyday sources like the suns cosmic rays, radon radioactive gas in the ground, microwaves, mobile phones etc.
Milliseiverts mSv are the measure of radiation absorbed by the body and Microsieverts 1/1000 of this. Putting things in perspective a flight from here to Spain can be a 4-7microSv whole body irradiation. 1 dental x-ray by comparison is also 4-7microSv but of course only irradiating the mouth area where fortunately there is very little in the way of radiation sensitive rapidly dividing cells. 2 D Panoramic x-rays are in the region of 17 to 26 microsv. The diagnostic advantages of these using relatively low doses of radiation are considered to far outweigh the risks. 3D Cone Beam CT can be 20 to 100microsv but the Hospital CT 1000microSv. Speak to your clinician beforehand about your radiography and be sure the image wanted outweighs any radiation concerns