WHAT IS DENTAL DISEASE?
Dental disease spans multiple issues caused by plaque formation on the teeth. As plaque accumulates, it hardens, forming tartar. This build-up, especially near the gum line, can lead to infected tissue and surrounding bone. The result is painful infection and inflammation that can impact the entire body.
HOW DOES DENTAL DISEASE AFFECT MY PET?
Bacteria is a significant component of dental disease. As tartar progresses under the gum line, bacteria travel into surrounding tissue and bone, which can cause numerous health concerns. This infection may lead to pain and tooth-root abscesses. Sometimes the issues can even lead to fractures. Oral bacteria can enter the bloodstream, which can impact the heart, liver, and kidneys.
DENTAL DISEASE IN DOGS
Dental disease is one of the most common medical conditions seen by veterinarians and over 80% of dogs over the age of 3 have dental disease. While we humans develop cavities or tooth decay, dogs usually develop and infection of the gum line called periodontal disease. This infection can cause other health issues and pain, so it's essential to have your veterinarian examine your canine companions.
DENTAL DISEASE IN CATS
Cats commonly develop inflammation and infection of the gumline as well as tooth resorptive lesions, which is a progressive destruction of the crown. This causes the tooth to become brittle which can lead to fractures. Cats often hide dental disease so examinations are critical in catching this and other painful conditions.
Bleeding from the mouth
Broken or loose teeth
Teeth that are discolored or covered in tartar
Abnormal chewing, drooling or dropping food from the mouth
Swelling in the areas surrounding the mouth
Changes in behavior
Bad breath is the most common indicator of dental disease and is the only clinical sign observed by owners. Clients often comment that they did not realize their pet's teeth were bothering them until a cleaning was performed.
WHAT DOES A PROFESSIONAL DENTAL CLEANING ENTAIL?
Removing of plaque and tartar that has built up on the tooth above and below the gumline.
Smoothing the tooth's surface and removing any residual plaque. This delays deposition of plaque and tartar after the cleaning.
Our pet-safe fluoride treatment is designed to strengthen tooth enamel and prevent deterioration.
WARNING: Some pictures below may be disturbing.
How bad can it get?
The plaque infects the gumline and with time causes abscesses like seen here. The grey mucous is purulent discharge, commonly called puss. The infection invades the soft tissue & bone, and has the ability to spread throughout the whole body seeding in the heart, lung, liver, and kidney. It is amazing how pets with disease so advanced will eat and drink normally. This level of infection is not uncommon to see on routine examinations. Most of the upper teeth pictured will need to be removed to decrease infection and pain.