Until recently, veterinary patients have had a limited range of dental treatments available to them. While scaling and polishing (professional cleaning) and extraction of unhealthy teeth are still the most common procedures performed, we now offer advanced options for treating disease and saving teeth. These are especially worth considering for working or show animals, or those that rely on their teeth for sport or play.
- Periodontal therapy can help slow jaw bone loss and preserve teeth
- Root canal treatment can be used to save dead or broken teeth
- Vital pulp capping of freshly fractured teeth allows us to keep these teeth alive
- Orthodontic treatments such as ball therapy, odontoplasty, crown reduction, incline plates, crown extensions, gingivoplasty and braces can relieve traumatic bite abnormalities and provide a comfortable and functional bite
- Oral surgery to remove impacted or unerupted teeth and treat dentigerous cysts can prevent severe, irreversible jaw destruction and loss.
- Dental sealants can help with minor fractures and dental sensitivity
In some cases extractions are the best option, or cannot be avoided. There are also patients where full mouth extractions may be needed to regain a healthy, pain-free mouth. The thing to remember is that pets do absolutely fine without teeth (and many return to eating biscuits with gusto!) as long as they have you to do the ‘hunting’ for them.
Dental treatments almost always require general anaesthesia. While anaesthesia-free dentistry sounds attractive, we truly believe that a well-managed general anaesthetic is not only required for us to diagnose and treat disease thoroughly (including all teeth above and
below the gumline), but is far safer than trying to perform dental procedures in a conscious animal. That’s why we anaesthetise our own pets when they need dental care (Dr Christine has even operated on her own pets from as young as 8 weeks through to 18 years of age!).
Where more than one option is available for your pet, the relative benefits and drawbacks of these in each individual case are always discussed openly during your consultation. General information on anaesthesia and the different treatment options we offer can be found below. If you have questions that aren’t answered here, make sure you ask at your appointment, or head over to the contact section for further advice.