Should I Be Worried About Getting an X-ray?

It’s never a fun situation when you have to schedule an X-ray. Although X-rays involve radiation and are usually scheduled because of injuries or things of that nature, they are generally safe to get.

Our AFC Urgent Care Ooltewah team explains why below.

What Are X-rays?

An X-ray is a common imaging test that’s been used for decades, and it helps your doctor view the inside of the body without having to make an incision. This can help him or her diagnose, monitor and treat all sorts of medical conditions.

Also, X-rays are technically classified as a carcinogen by the WHO, but there are ways to limit the small amount of radiation that you or your child will be exposed to when getting the exam. We’ve listed those ways below.

Ways to Limit Radiation Exposure

  • Keep a record of all of your past imaging studies, especially those requiring radiation.
  • Discuss with your doctor the risks and benefits of having the study in the first place and any potential alternative testing that may not include radiation exposure.
  • Understand the purpose of the study and know why it is being recommended for you.

So, How Safe Are X-rays?

They’re generally safe. The only real risk with X-rays is if you or your child gets a lot of them, but for most, radiation exposure probably only raises the risk of cancer a very small amount, if at all.

Plus, the risks of not having an X-ray when needed are much greater than any small risk of the X-ray itself. We’ve listed some ways you can still be careful and limit X-ray risk below.

Ways to Exercise Caution

  • Talk with your healthcare provider if you are worried that you have received too many X-ray tests.
  • Only allow X-rays, fluoroscopy or CT scans when there is a clear health benefit.
  • Only X-ray the area needed.
  • Use shielding when possible, especially for very sensitive areas, such as the thyroid gland and genitals.

Although summer camps like Big Fish Sports Camp are fun, injuries can happen among your kids, too! Don’t hesitate to visit our AFC Urgent Care Ooltewah center today if you or your child needs an X-ray.