Eighty percent of dogs and seventy percent of cats over the age of three years have dental disease. Unfortunately, many pet owners neglect dental care for their pets and this often results in kidney, liver and/or heart problems. Gum disease is caused by plaque accumulating beneath the gum line and attacking the surrounding gums and bone structure, which often results in tooth loss as well as other life threatening problems.
Often pets show no sign of dental disease other than bad breath and many pet owners do not realize that halitosis is the least of the problems caused by neglected oral health.
Some pets with dental disease paw or rub the face or have changes in their eating habits an indication they need dental care. We are happy to check your pet’s teeth any time you are in for an appointment at Sunnycrest Animal Care Center to let you know if your pet needs dental care. We are happy to show you how to brush your pet’s teeth and make dietary suggestions that will also prolong the time between dental cleanings.
Most pet require dental care including cleaning and polishing periodically. So that we can thoroughly examine the teeth and oral structures and remove all the tartar, we perform dental cleanings under general anesthesia. We remove the visible tartar using an ultrasonic tooth cleaning device called a Cavitron and use hand scaling as well. We probe periodontal pockets and measure depth of the pockets to assess periodontal disease,exposed roots are smoothed (root planed), the enamel is polished using a Prophy-Jet, the mouth is disinfected, and a fluoride treatment or plaque repellent sealant is applied. We sometimes need to extract teeth that are beyond repair.
Ultrasonic dental cleaning is an effective and faster way to remove dental tartar and to do root planing than traditional hand scaling.
The ultrasonic scaler or Cavitron works by using ultra high frequency vibrations that blast calculus or tartar from the teeth. The tip of the instrument vibrates on the surface of the tooth and produces very high frequency sound waves, which shatter the hard calculus we usually find on the teeth of dogs and cats. Another advantage of using ultrasonic cleaning is that the water produces rapidly forming and collapsing bubbles, which break up the cell walls of bacteria and reduce the chance of inducing infection from bacteria normally present in the mouth. The ultrasonic device cleans below the gum line which is sometimes missed using ordinary hand scaling techniques. After using the ultrasonic cleaner we perform any necessary minor hand scaling and then use the ProphyJet for final polishing.
Please don’t neglect your pets’ dental care!