Lead aprons, thyroid collars no longer needed for dental X-rays: ADA

The American Dental Association recently updated its recommendations for radiography safety. 

The organization recommended discontinuing the use of lead abdominal aprons and thyroid collars when conducting dental X-rays, determining that these items are not necessary to shield patients from radiation exposure. It also noted that dentists should justify the use of X-rays by considering the diagnostic information needed to benefit patient care or improve clinical outcomes.

The ADA pointed to evidence showing that modern digital X-ray equipment and restricting the beam size only to the area needed provided better protection against radiation exposure. 

The new recommendations apply to all patients, regardless of age or health status, the ADA said.

The new recommendations were published Feb. 1 in the Journal of the American Dental Association and follow the ADA's updated guidance for capturing and exchanging digital radiographs.

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