Dental care for pets is just as important as it is for people!
Dental care for your pet is extremely important. Periodontal disease is the most common clinical condition occurring in adult dogs and cats and is entirely preventable. Here are a few facts about dental pain and disease so you can make an informed decision about a dental visit for your pet.
What is periodontal or dental disease? Periodontal disease is a progressive inflammation of the supporting structures around the teeth.
What causes periodontal disease? Periodontal disease starts when bacteria form plaque on the teeth. Within days, minerals in the saliva bond with plaque to form tartar, a hard substance that adheres to the teeth. The bacteria work their way under the gums and cause gingivitis, which is an inflammation of the gums. These bacteria can then travel in the bloodstream to infect the heart, kidneys, and liver.
How is dental disease diagnosed? Dental disease is diagnosed by examining the teeth and supporting structures while the pet is under anesthesia. Some dental disease can be reversed such as gingivitis through dental cleaning and polishing. Loss of tooth attachment and bone loss cannot be reversed.
Here are some signs of Dental Disease or Pain:
- Bad breath
- Redness or bleeding along the gum line
- Drooling, which may be tinged with blood
- Difficulty chewing
- Facial swelling, especially under the eyes
- Loose or missing teeth