We have two X-ray machines that we use every day. The main machine is used on our small animal patients in the surgery and is also taken out to X-ray horses. The X-ray films are developed in seconds in our digital processor giving us high quality images.
Our second machine is specific for dental X-rays in small animals. We consider teeth a bit like icebergs. The part of the tooth that we can see, the crown, is the tip of the iceberg and it comprises less than half the tooth. The rest of the tooth is buried in the jaw bones out of site. A lot of tooth disease actually happens in these buried roots so it is so important that we use the dental X-rays to get a full evaluation of the teeth.
The photo on the left shows a dog under general anaesthetic having a dental X-ray taken. On the right is the image that we took.
This is an X-ray of a cat's jaw. The yellow arrow shows normal tooth roots, the white arrow shows damage to roots. You can see how there are holes and loss of form in these roots that could only have been seen on X-ray. Teeth like these cause a lot of pain and have to be removed.