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Dental x-rays in pregnancy?

(7 Posts)
onceipopicantstop Thu 16-May-13 10:16:48

Hi am having a dilemma and hoping someone will have words of wisdom and stop me flapping!
We are ttc dc2. I need a root canal doing, saw my dentist a couple of weeks ago with toothache but I was in the 2ww. So she decided to do a temporary filling until I knew if I was pregnant or not. This is because ideally she needs to do 3 x-rays but if I was pregnant would only do 1. I'm not pregnant this time so had an appointment arranged for today but its now been cancelled by the practice (due to problems with the x-ray machine!) and rearranged for next week.

The problem is that I am due to ovulate this weekend so will once again be in the 2ww!! If we dtd that is!

I can't decide what to do!
1. Not try this month and get the tooth sorted - but am keen to get going with pregnancy as feel time is against me (due to age)
2. TTC as planned and go with one x-ray next week
3. TTC as planned and wait another few weeks to see if am pregnant or not before having the tooth done

The info on the internet seems to say that dental x-rays are very very low radiation so the risk is negligible. But still feel anxious! Especially as I would only just be pregnant and wonder if that's more risky because the cells are dividing etc etc

Any advice???

MrsMorton Thu 16-May-13 11:33:41

Are you in pain?

OhGood Thu 16-May-13 11:38:15

I would go ahead and TTC and do teeth.

1. My dentist who is excellent has said to me that guidelines have changed recently and they are more relaxed about x-rays in pregnancy.

2. It's better to get the root canal sorted properly - I had failed root canal when pg with DD1 which meant constant flare-ups of infection, ongoing low-grade infection and lots of antibiotics during the pregnancy. Bad for both of us.

Monka Thu 16-May-13 11:41:59

I had to have two dental x rays at 16 weeks because I was in so much pain and has to take my second course of antibiotics during this pregnancy. I think the risks are fairly negligible but obviously you can't help worrying - see how much pain you are in and if you can wait until you can take a pregnancy test and the root canal won't get any worse then wait. There is so much low level radiation we are exposed to on a daily basis like TVs, laptops, iPads etc that I think we should all be okay. My 20 wk scan came back fine and the baby is growing normally there is never any guarantees but its fairly low level radiation that hits your chest before your abdomen when you have a dental X-ray.

onceipopicantstop Thu 16-May-13 11:49:34

I'm not in pain at all since having the temporary filling. But presumably it would be better to get the tooth sorted properly sooner rather than later to avoid complications. So maybe we should ttc this month and plan to have the tooth sorted in a few weeks. Then could have 1 x-ray if bfp (fingers crossed! and 3 if bfn!

I am a terrible worrier as you may have gathered!!

differentnameforthis Thu 16-May-13 12:00:32

Most dental xrays are digital these day, requiring very low, very localised doses. That coupled with a protective lead apron & you will be fine.

For xrays to have any effect on reproductive areas, it needs to be more localised & VERY extensive exposure (i.e pretty relentless)

differentnameforthis Thu 16-May-13 12:05:15

To put it in perspective for you, op...I used to take xrays when I worked in a dental surgery. We used to wear special monitors that were sent off each month for checking. The scores ALWAYS came up at zero. One month I cracked a tooth & needed a root canal. I had about three xrays. The same month I had a patient who found it VERY difficult to keep the film in place. We needed the xray very badly (in a lot of pain) so I held it in place.

My monitor that month came back clear, just as every other month. And that was with older machines.

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