When dental disease strikes, plaque and tartar that accumulate on the teeth lead to infection of the gums. Bacteria from this infection travel in the bloodstream around the body and can cause infection in the heart. This commonly occurs in the heart’s lining and valves and is known as endocarditis.
And it’s not only the heart that is affected; the kidneys, liver and lungs can all be damaged by the bacteria.
Thankfully many of these problems can be reversed if dental disease is treated and the health of your pet’s mouth is improved.
Top tips for the prevention of dental disease
1. Lift your pet’s lip and have a look and a smell. If you notice any yellowing of the teeth or redness of the gums OR your pet’s breath smells a bit ‘off’, it is time for a check-up with us.
2. Regardless of whether you think something’s not quite right, get your pet’s mouth checked regularly by us. The earlier we spot an issue the better the outcome. Dental check-ups at least once a year can really help.
3. Get your pet eating the right diet. It’s essential that our pets chew their food! There are some excellent dental diets available and they work really well so ask us for the best recommendation.
4. Dental chews such as OraVet, Prozym and Greenies can help if used regularly and are an easy way to support your pet’s dental health.
5. Brush your pet’s teeth. This is considered gold standard but just make sure you use a pet-approved toothpaste. You need to commit to brushing your pet’s teeth ideally once a day or every other day at a minimum for it to be effective.
Don’t be tempted by offers of ‘anaesthesia free dentistry.” This form of teeth cleaning is simply cosmetic and it fails to address the root of the problem (removing the plaque and tartar and subsequent bacteria from under the gum-line).
We recommend a dental check-up at least once a year. Call us to book your pet in for a dental check-up today as you might be improving the health of their heart too. We offer FREE 5 minute dental checks so don’t delay book your pet in today.