Dental Special October 2018:
What an Anesthetic Dental Cleaning Means for your Pet
Did your veterinarian mention that your cat is in need of a dental? No need to worry! Anesthetic dental cleanings are 15% off at Nob Hill Cat Clinic in October!
Dental disease is a common and highly treatable condition in cats and affects between 50 and 90% of cats over four years of age. Unfortunately, dental disease can impact your cat’s quality of life as it progresses, causing some pets to cease eating certain foods, become lethargic, drool, or paw at their mouth.
What Causes Dental Disease?
Dental disease is the result of a buildup of bacteria in your pet’s mouth. Unlike humans, cats often don’t receive regular dental care, including cleanings or regular tooth brushing. Even those that do may fall prey to an accumulation of bacteria on their teeth or along their gum line.
When and Why is a Dental Cleaning Necessary?
Your veterinarian may recommend a dental cleaning for a variety of reasons. Generally, they will advise a cleaning if your pet’s dental health is at risk or is already compromised. There are a myriad of feline dental diseases and complications, many of which can be greatly improved by a thorough dental cleaning. A anesthetic dental cleaning also allows your veterinarian to take radiographs of your cat’s mouth, illuminating potential problems that may not be visible to the naked eye.
Gingivitis is an inflammation of gum tissue surrounding the teeth and is generally the result of untreated plaque. A cat’s immune system responds to the bacteria, causing your pet’s gums to become swollen, red, and potentially painful. During a dental cleaning, your veterinary team will remove plaque and bacteria from your cat’s teeth, reducing your pet’s immune system’s need to respond.
Although brushing a cat’s teeth can help prevent and treat gingivitis, it can also be painful or difficult. Some cases may be too advanced to benefit from regular tooth brushing alone. An anesthetic dental cleaning at Nob Hill Cat Clinic involves the removal of inflammation-causing bacteria without undue stress and pain for your pet.
Untreated gingivitis may progress and become a more serious condition: periodontitis. Periodontitis refers to destruction of the tissues connecting your cat’s teeth to other dental structures and can be non-reversible. In some cases, tooth extraction may be necessary.
An anesthetic dental cleaning and x-rays will reveal whether or not teeth need to be extracted and help prevent further damage to tooth and gum structure.
Tooth resorption originally presents as pink coloration around the base of a tooth and refers to a breakdown of tooth structure beginning within the tooth itself. It can be very painful, and afflicted cats may refuse food, drool, or react negatively to having their face touched. Some cats may not display obvious signs of pain, so their owners may not deem a visit to us necessary. However, a quicker diagnosis allows for a more effective therapeutic plan and, generally, a better prognosis.
Dental x-rays can reveal the extent to which the disease has progressed and equip your veterinarian to make a decision regarding extractions and other treatment.
What Does an Anesthetic Dental Cleaning Consist of?
At Nob Hill Cat Clinic, we generally recommend bloodwork prior to anesthesia, so your pet will need a separate visit before their cleaning. When they come in for their cleaning, your veterinary team will place an intravenous catheter in order to administer fluids or medication while they are under anesthesia; you may notice a shaved patch on your cat’s leg post-visit.
The team will monitor your cat’s vital signs as well as scale and polish his or her teeth. Dental x-rays taken during the procedure alert your veterinarian to any necessary extractions. By the time you take your feline friend home, their teeth will be clean, free of plaque and tartar, and their breath will usually smell significantly better!
An anesthetic dental cleaning at Nob Hill Cat Clinic allows your pet to rest comfortably while our medical staff work to improve their dental health. Although anesthesia carries inherent risks, pre-anesthesia bloodwork and careful monitoring during cleaning help prevent potential harm to your cat. Non-anesthetic dental cleanings are often not thorough enough to sufficiently improve your pet’s dental health. They can also be incredibly stressful and may increase your pet’s anxiety during future veterinary visits.
Anesthetic dental cleanings at a hospital you trust are an excellent way to minimize stress for your cat while ensuring a healthier lifestyle. Schedule your dental cleaning at Nob Hill Cat Clinic for October and receive 15% off!
By Kaitlin Murphy