Avoid dental problems by having your pet’s teeth examined and cleaned regularly
Dental hygiene is as important for your pet’s health as it is for us. Dental disease, if left untreated leads to bacteria disseminating into the blood stream targeting kidney, heart, and liver that can cause permanent organ damage.
Many of these problems can be avoided by having your pet’s teeth examined and professionally cleaned on a regular basis.
SOME SIGNS OF DENTAL PROBLEMS INCLUDE:
- Bad breath (halitosis)
- A yellowish-brownish plaque on the teeth near the gum line
- Buildup of tartar
- Swollen and inflamed gums that tend to bleed
- Reluctance to eat and acting depressed
- Dropping food and having to repeatedly retrieve it
- Drooling excessively
- Loose or missing teeth
- Pawing at the mouth
- Swelling underneath the eye, indicating an abscessed tooth
Veterinary dentistry is quite different from human dentistry. For most of us, caring for our teeth is part of our daily hygiene routine. Consequently, our visits to the dentist are quite brief. That is not necessarily true for our pets. A good oral examination and cleaning requires anesthesia. Did you know that most dental problems in pets occur below the gum line? Since they cannot articulate where it hurts, full mouth x-rays are needed to determine what problem area to focus on.
A thorough cleaning involves removal of tartar and plaque with a hand scaler. Further cleaning, especially underneath the gums (root planing) is done with an ultrasonic scaler. Your pet’s teeth are then polished, lavaged with an antiseptic solution and treated with fluoride. A barrier sealant (OraVet) will be applied to slow down the return of bacterial plaque.
Any advanced procedures such as cleft palate repair, mandibulectomy, root canals, etc will be performed by Dr. Sharon Hoffman (our attending board certified dentist).
CLICK HERE to see pictures and learn more about stages of Periodontal Disease.