How To Tell If Your Cat Needs Urgent Dental Help

Posted on: 2 February 2016

If you've never brushed your cat's teeth, it's a good time to start. However, there comes a time where if dental disease is allowed to progress far enough, at-home care can't reverse the damage. If your cat is exhibiting one or more of these oral health warning signs, you should get to a veterinarian right away.

Foul-Smelling Breath

Cat food isn't one of the most pleasant-smelling things on the planet, but there's a difference between cat food breath and simply bad breath. If your cat has extremely strong, foul-smelling breath even when they haven't eaten recently, they may have severe dental disease. Unfortunately, one of the leading causes for this kind of problem is that the teeth or gums are either experiencing an extreme infection, or are even beginning to die.

While mild gingivitis can be reversed with proper at-home dental care, severe gum disease and cavities can't. If your cat has this symptom, you should get them to a veterinarian right away. These types of infections and decay can potentially spread to other parts of the body, including the heart, so it's not something you should put off.

Bleeding Gums

Bleeding is a common symptom that comes from gum disease, and it means that your cat's gums are in trouble. Mild gingivitis rarely causes bleeding, but more severe forms of gum disease like periodontitis do. Periodontitis can only be treated by a veterinarian or pet dentist, as it requires an intensive cleaning, scaling of the teeth, and possibly even lancing and draining the gums. In addition, depending on whether the disease has become an infection or not, antibiotics may be necessary.

Recessed Gums

Another sign that your cat is experiencing gum disease is that their gums may pull farther up the tooth. This can expose the bony portion of the tooth that isn't protected by enamel, or even the roots of the tooth, making for a very painful experience for your cat. Regularly brushing their teeth can help to prevent this disorder, but once it's this extreme, it's time to see a vet.

Regularly brushing your cat's teeth can help to keep their overall oral health in good shape, but it's also necessary to see a vet for regular check-ups. Vets can perform more thorough cleanings while a cat is under general sedation, which means they can remove the tartar and reverse gum disease that at-home brushing just can't.

For a vet in your area, contact a company such as River View Veterinary Service LLC.


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