The Topic Of This Post

  • Dental panoramic or orthopantomography: which exam is it?
  • How does the exam work?
  • Who should do the overview?

To thoroughly investigate the state of health& medicare of our mouth, including teeth and gums, our dentist may have suggested that we perform a dental panoramic. It is a simple and painless examination that is invaluable for identifying caries, granulomas, cysts, and all those criticalities that are difficult to recognize from a simple dental visit. So let’s see what the dental overview consists of, in which cases it is recommended and what information our dentist can draw from it.


A dental overview is the “common” name with which we refer to the exam which, in medical jargon, is called orthopantomography from the name of the machinery that is used. It is a radiographic survey that aims to show, in a single image, the upper and lower dental arches, as well as the paranasal sinuses.

The breadth of the “photograph” that the orthopantomography is capable of capturing, thanks to X-rays, means that this type of examination is functional to give us a global vision of the state of health of our mouth as a whole. A vast panorama which can have different purposes:

  • Identification and study of teeth guide uncle
  • Evaluation of tooth development in children and adolescents
  • Study of granulomas and bone cysts
  • Monitoring of the state of the temporomandibular joints
  • Observation of the paranasal sinuses
  • Detection of caries placed in positions difficult to observe with the naked eye
  • Dental evaluation during interventions such as implants, both before and after.

The objective of the dental overview is, therefore, to allow the analysis of a general and broad vision of oral health, giving our dentists a lot of useful information to establish an accurate diagnosis and to propose an effective therapy in case of problems.


Painless and very quick, the examination of the dental overview takes no more than 5 minutes in total, between preparation and execution. The orthopantomography revolves around the patient’s head, who must be still, standing or sitting, with a plastic plate between the teeth so that the arches are aligned. Once the machine has circled the head, the exam is over.

Dentists recommend removing, before the examination, earrings, piercings, hairpins, or other elements that could alter the image to be detected, confusing the results. Furthermore, it is essential to try to remain as still as possible during the exam, to allow precise and focused detection, otherwise, it is necessary to repeat it also increases the exposure to X-rays.


As we have already highlighted, the dental panoramic is a preliminary investigation that is often prescribed by the dentist to have an overall picture of the patient’s mouth. Therefore, it is recommended during dental development, once the final teeth have been placed, in the case of specific interventions in the oral cavity, during the first visit to a new structure.

It may also be requested when the dentist needs some specific information, for example before proceeding with surgery or with a specific dental manipulation. Just as it is used as an investigation in the case of bone fractures involving the jaw or mandible.

On the other hand, orthopantomography is not recommended for children and pregnant women. In the first case, it is avoided both because the milk teeth are monitored with other examinations and because it is particularly difficult for them to remain immobile during the entire examination. In the second case, however, the risks are connected to exposure, albeit minimal, to radiation: for this reason, the pregnancy must be promptly communicated to the dentist who will assess, case by case, whether it is appropriate to proceed with the same procedure. exam or not.

Since the results of this investigation are valuable tools to stem problems in time that can also degenerate in a serious way such as caries, granulomas, and bone cysts, it is important not to underestimate their importance and to constantly discuss with our dentist. , who will be able to advise us when it is time to do a dental panoramic. Support, from this point of view, is that provided by integrative health care.

Not everyone knows that taking out a policy like UniSalute Dentista allows us not only to have free access to a check-up visit and teeth cleaning per year but also to take advantage of discounted prices on dental care if we turn to an affiliated dentist. In addition, there is also a specific plan for children between 3 and 17 years old, based on the needs of the age of tooth development. Did you know about these opportunities?


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