CT scans - information for dental practitioners and their patients
As part of oral health care, dentists and dental specialists sometimes request or provide medical imaging known as cone beam CT Scans (CBCT). Information for parents and carers, dentists, orthodontists, oral surgeons and other dental practitioners is included below.
Resources for dental patients, parents and carers
Cone beam CT scans in oral health care for children and young people
This brochure explains the benefits and the risks of cone beam CT scans for children and young people and includes questions you can ask dentists and dental specialists. Its companion poster includes questions and ideas for parents and carers to discuss with their child's dentist.
Resources for dental healthcare professionals
The consumer brochure Cone beam CT scans in oral health care for children and young people and its companion poster could also help dentists and dental specialists talk with patients and their parents and carers about the benefits and risks of CBCT over other types of dental Imaging.
The Australian Dental Association has also produced a fact sheet on the purpose of dental X-rays.
A number of national and international articles on CBCT have also been published in the Australian Dental Journal that provide dentists and dental specialists with guidance on:
- the risk of cancer from ionising radiation used in medical and dental practice, the principles of justification and optimisation as they apply to dental practice and the effective dose of various dental imaging options - see Australian Dental Journal, Volume 57, Supplement p2, March 2012
- relevant medico-legal principles involved in dental radiography and the need to explain the benefits and the risks to patients Australian Dental Journal, Volume 57, Supplement p9, March 2012
- the importance of providing accurate and appropriate information so patients and parents have a better knowledge and understanding of dental radiography for children Australian Dental Journal, Volume 58, June 2013
- the advantages and limitations of CBCT in diagnosis and surgical planning for oral and maxillofacial surgery Australian Dental Journal, Volume 57, Supplement p82, March 2012
Other related resources
- Radiation associated with different types of medical imaging - an online learning module, Radiation Protection of the Patient, has been developed for referrers of medical imaging. The content has been produced by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA).
Learn more here about CT scans and radiation exposure in children and young people.
Learn more here about the development and quality assurance of healthdirect content.
Last reviewed: August 2021