Vertical Bitewing X-ray Images
A vertical bitewing X-ray image is positioned in the mouth to show more of the tooth roots and supporting alveolar bone than a horizontally oriented bitewing.
Bitewing radiographs (X-rays) may be exposed to evaluate your hard tissues (tooth and bone) for tooth decay, bone loss, or signs of other disease processes. Bitewings allow a look at teeth in both jaws with a single film. They normally don't show any tooth in its entirety. Most commonly, four bitewing X-rays are needed to image between all of the back teeth on adult patients, from the second molars to the canines. Normally, bitewing X-ray film is inserted in the mouth horizontally. If the dentist needs to see more detail in or around the roots of the teeth, it might be necessary to rotate the film and position it vertically instead. The result is that fewer teeth can be imaged in one exposure, and more images will be needed to evaluate all of the teeth.
Page last updated: 7/6/2011