Some signs there might be a dental problem are:
- Bad breath
- Red gums
- Abnormal salivation
- Pawing at the face
- Bleeding from the mouth
- Appetite loss
- Dropping food while eating
- Behavioral changes
- Facial swelling
- Sneezing or nasal discharge
Sometimes there are no obvious signs of a problem so it is important to have your pet’s teeth checked regularly by your veterinarian. Even with regular brushing it is recommended you have your pet’s teeth professionally cleaned and polished periodically. What can you expect at a dental appointment?
- An exam
- Teeth are thoroughly cleaned with an ultrasonic scaler to remove any tartar and plaque.
- Teeth are polished to remove any microscopic scratches.
- A periodontal probe is used to check for any pockets around teeth where further treatment is necessary.
- Digital dental x-rays are taken as needed to check for infection around roots of teeth.
- Teeth are charted to note any missing teeth or where any problems might be.
- Teeth that are loose, infected or broken may require surgical extraction.
- Fluoride may be applied to strengthen teeth to help minimize future problems.
- Your pet’s blood pressure, pulse, temperature and oxygen level is monitored throughout the entire procedure.
- Pain management is used as needed.
After you take your pet home it is important to continue dental care to ensure a happy and healthy mouth. There are several products on the market to help you manage your pet’s dental care. Talk to your veterinarian or technician to find out which ones are right for you.
Remember, it’s good to chew, better to rinse and best to brush!!
Stages of Periodontal Disease
Stage 1. Early Gingivitis
Stage 2. Advanced Gingivitis
Inflammation and gingival swelling
Inflammation, gingival swelling, and beginning of bone loss
Stage 4. Established Periodontitis
Inflammation, gingival swelling, purulent discharge, bone loss, and tooth instability