Looking for dental advice:

In the US, every dentist I've seen will not clean my teeth without an x-ray. My teeth have been perfect since birth, so I don't think that something new has cropped up in the past six months.

I've stopped going to the dentist for this reason; I'm tired of getting radiated and I'm tired of getting bullied into a $300+ x-ray that reveals nothing. I just brush my teeth and eat well.


My wife feels the same way, but she really wants her teeth cleaned by an expert. Any advice on finding a dentist that isn't a bully?

Also curious if Europeans get x-rays every six months, or is this another American money grab.


Thanks for the replies everyone!

I also have a few more pertinent details to drop here:
1. My long-term dentist isn't willing to consider my record of good health and delay the x-rays.
2. When finding a new dentist, not a single one of them could be bothered to contact the old dentist to see previous x-rays and make an assesment. They "need" their OWN x-ray.
3. They all tout the safety of modern x-rays, such low dosage. I suspect Jevons paradox: "they're less harmful, let's do more of them!" 💸

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@winduptoy a dentist once explained to me that you need 300 in a year to get up to a harmful dose, (from memory) and they are supposed to account for how many you have had in the year.

@winduptoy my dentist only does a full xray every 2 years, and then does a few once or twice a year to check certain spots (I have bone loss). I think it's impossible to go to a new dentist without getting xrays, it's likely an insurance thing. (I wasn't allowed to start perio maintenance without a full perio cleaning for this reason). You may be able to find a dentist with a less extreme xray policy, but probably not one that won't require them at the start

@birdstare Here's my problem: I don't have dental insurance, so this is a transaction between me and the dentist; no insurance scams involved.

I respect the dentist's expertise, so if they look in my mouth and say "wow this looks odd, we better do an x-ray" then I will happily agree. But the up-front bullying for expensive and harmful procedures before any evaluation has taken place is what's killing me. This does not happen in Europe, so I don't believe that the US has more advanced practices.

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