Periodontal Disease

Introduction: Animal periodontal disease refers to an acute or chronic inflammation of the animal periodontal ligament and its surrounding tissues, also known as periodontitis, periodontal abscess, etc. Characterized by periodontal pocket formation, bone resorption, tooth loosening, and gingival recession. Long-term intake of soft and thin food is the main cause of periodontal disease. Animals often show bad breath and salivation. During the treatment, the diseased dental plaque should be thoroughly scraped first, and then the teeth should be cleaned. If there is a systemic reaction, broad-spectrum antibiotics can be used to control the infection. Animals with loss of appetite or eating less can be treated with supportive therapy. Prevention is based on regular inspection and timely removal of tartar and calculus.

Animal periodontal disease (periodontal disease) refers to an acute or chronic inflammation of the animal periodontal ligament and its surrounding tissues, also known as periodontitis, periodontal abscess, etc. Characterized by periodontal pocket formation, bone resorption, tooth loosening, and gingival recession.

The disease is more common in dogs, and although rare in cats, it is more serious when it occurs.

Dog Periodontal Disease

dog periodontal disease
Picture Source: Internet

Etiology

Gingivitis, unhygienic oral cavity, tartar, food impaction and microbial invasion, especially long-term intake of soft and thin food are the main causes of periodontal disease.

Plaque (predominance of Gram-negative anaerobic bacteria) plays an important role in the development of periodontal disease.

Certain brachycephalic breeds of dogs may be predisposing factors for this disease due to tooth shape and tooth position malformation, insufficiency, excessively long soft palate, mandibular insufficiency, lack of chewing, and periodontal movement disorders.

In addition, inappropriate feeding and systemic diseases, such as diabetes, low calcium intake, hyperparathyroidism and chronic nephritis can all cause the occurrence of this disease.

Symptom

Animals often show bad breath and salivation, want to eat but can only eat soft food, and dare not chew hard food. Tap the diseased tooth with a tartar scraper, and the pain will be obvious.

The periodontal ligament is destroyed, and the gingival sulcus deepens, forming a periodontal pocket with pus, or a subgingival abscess. Gently press the gums, periodontal pus discharge. Generally, there are multiple molars. In the later stage of the disease, the teeth become loose, but the pain is not obvious.

Cats often stop eating suddenly, convulsions and convulsions occur in severe cases, some turn around or fall down, and resist inspection.

Diagnosis

According to the medical history and clinical symptoms, it is not difficult to diagnose.

In order to diagnose its severity, periodontal pocket depth measurement (normal periodontal pocket depth 1~3mm), radiology and gingival tissue examination can be performed. Hematology and serology tests should be done if necessary.

Autoimmune and immunosuppressive diseases, chronic kidney disease and diabetes may be complicated by periodontal disease, and clinical differential diagnosis should be paid attention to.

Treat

Under anesthesia, the diseased tooth plaque should be thoroughly scraped first, including the tartar below the gums, and the tooth that is obviously loose or seriously diseased should be extracted. Hypertrophic gingiva can be removed by electrocautery or surgical resection.

After the teeth have been scraped, polished, or necessary tooth extraction, clean the teeth with an ultrasonic scaler, or rinse them directly with normal saline or 0.1% potassium permanganate solution, and apply 2% tincture of iodine to the gums.

If there is a systemic reaction, broad-spectrum antibiotics can be used to control the infection, such as amoxicillin, metronidazole or tetracycline orally; ampicillin, cephalosporins, and quinolones can also be injected intramuscularly, twice a day.

Animals with loss of appetite or food intake can be supported by supportive therapy, including intravenous infusion of glucose, high-dose injection of vitamin B complex, and daily lavage of the gums with normal saline or other disinfectant solutions to prevent food and debris from depositing.

To prevent food retention, rinse mouth after eating. Supply liquid and soft feed within 2 weeks until the gums heal.

Prevention

Regularly check and remove tartar and calculus in time. In addition, dogs should often be given bones or rubber toys to chew on to exercise their teeth and remove dirt. It is best to brush teeth regularly for dogs and cats.