Feb 16 2012

Brantford Veterinary Clinic supports Dental Health Month

Brantford Veterinary Clinic supports Dental Health Month

by Jennifer Church, R.V.T.

 

Did you know February is dental health month?

 

80% of dogs and 70% of cats over age 3 suffer from periodontal disease.

How do you know if your dog or cat has dental disease?  Here are signs you can look for:

«     Yellow or brown discolouration of the teeth

«     Persistant bad breath

«     Bleeding or inflamed gums

«     Loose teeth

«     Missing or broken teeth

«     Trouble chewing or eating food

«     Sensitivity around the mouth

«     Unusual drooling

«     Loss of appetite

«     Lethargy

 

What should you do if you notice your dog or cat has these symptoms/signs?

 

Call your veterinarian and book a dental consultation.

 

Once your veterinarian has assessed the severity of your pets’ dental disease, they may make recommendations.  Some options would be:

«     Dental scale and polish

«     Brushing your pets teeth

«     Dental diets

«     Dental chews and toys

«     Additives for their water

 

Parts of teeth and gums:

Peridontium – structures that support the teeth

Gingiva – soft tissue that surrounds the teeth and cover the bone

Cementum – tissue that attaches the root to the ligament

 

Factors in dental disease:

Plaque          – bacterial film that forms on teeth daily.  Can lead to gingivitis and                              periodontal disease.

Calculus        – also known as tartar

– mineralized, crusty deposits that irritate the gums when plaque is                             removed

Gingivitis      – inflammation of the gingiva or gums

Periodontal disease – painful oral disease that can lead to tooth loss and organ disease.

Periodontitis – inflammation and disease of the tooth supportive tissue.

 

Stages of oral health:

Health – minimal plaque and tartar on the tooth surface

Gingivitis – plaque, tartar and mild bad breath

Early periodontal disease – inflammation and swelling of the gums with moderate bad breath

Established periodontal disease – bleeding gums, pustular discharge with severe bad breath

Advanced periodontal disease – loose teeth, bleeding gums, inflammation of the gums and severe bad breath.

 

Diagnosing the problem is the first step.  Call your veterinarian to book a consult today!

 

brantfordadmin | Tech Talk

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