If you keep abreast at all with radiation exposure from medical imaging, you may have heard of the Image Wisely campaign. The Imagely Wisely Campaign was designed to have people aware of the fact that certain medical imaging tests such as CT exams are sometimes over used and do not have to be used in certain instances. The goal is to reduce radiation exposure to patients while still providing good medical care, see http://www.imagewisely.org/. The Image Gently campaign is designed to provide information to parents and others to help reduce exposure to radiation for children, see http://imagegently.org/, and has been around since 2007.
The campaign is supported by the Alliance for Radiation Safety in Pediatric Imaging, which is a coalition of healthcare organizations dedicated to providing safe and high-quality pediatric imaging. Recently, it has been announced that a new Image Gently campaign in dentistry will be launched in September, 2014. The Image Gently alliance partners in dentistry consist of groups such as the American Dental Association and American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons.
The campaign states that radiographic selection should be based on professional judgment after taking a history and clinical examination. The campaign says that x-rays should be selected for individual needs and not used routinely. For example, if proximal surfaces of the teeth can be visually inspected then it is not necessary to take bitewing radiographs. The campaign states that imaging should be done that generates images the fastest (while of course preserving quality). For intraoral radiography F-speed should be used and for digital imaging the exposure parameters should be set as low as possible to preserve diagnostic ability. The campaign says that the beam should be collimated to the area of interest.
Other insights from the Image Gently campaign in dentistry include using thyroid collars when imaging children and using less exposure time for children than adults. The campaign also says that cone-beam CT should only be used when it is essential for diagnosis and treatment. This is because it can cause more additional radiation exposure than alternative methods.
I have previously commented on using x-rays for wisdom teeth diagnosis and planning see http://www.teethremoval.com/wisdomteeth.html.
Source: Allan Farman. DrBicuspid. Image Gently in Dentistry: Child-size x-ray dose for kids. July 28, 2014. http://www.drbicuspid.com/index.aspx?sec=log&URL=http%3a%2f%2fwww.drbicuspid.com%2findex.aspx%3fsec%3dnws%26sub%3dkwd%26ItemID%3d316116