Pet Dental Month

February 22, 2017
By

When we go to the dentist our teeth are scaled as well. Most of us sit in the chair and open our mouths when requested. I don’t know about you but I do not know of too many dogs or cats that will sit and open their mouths for us. Dogs and cats need to go under general anesthesia in order to do a proper dental exam and scale the teeth. Once the teeth are scaled and clean the doctor will decide if any teeth need to be extracted. The doctor will also look at the dental radiographs to ensure there are no problems underneath the gums.

A professional dental cleaning is done here to remove the dental plaque and tartar that can cause periodontal disease. This is done with an ultrasonic scaler. After scaling, the teeth are polished to remove residual plaque and to smooth the tooth surface. The mouth is rinsed to remove any additional debris before the final inspection is done. Fluoride foam is applied to help prevent plaque buildup.

Radiographs are recommended and are a valuable tool to evaluate the health of the jaw and the tooth roots below the gumline. Most dental disease occurs below the gumline, where you can’t see it.

What you should watch for signs of a fractured tooth in a dog:

  • Changes in the tooth shape, color or position
  • Localized facial swelling or pain
  • Reduced biting pressure during play
  • Reluctance to eat or refusal of food, especially hard food
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