What does a dental examination involve?
The first step is a visit to our clinic, where a dental examination will take place, which will confirm that tartar needs to be removed. Already during this visit we are able to give you a rough price estimate. We try to approach our clients transparently so that it is completely clear what will be done and how much it will cost. Together we will consult what is needed before the teeth cleaning itself. For example, a preanesthetic blood test is usually recommended for most animals undergoing anesthesia. This blood test allows us to assess your pet's overall health and thus reduce the risk of anesthesia itself. Anesthesia is important to enable a thorough examination of all teeth, including a dental X-ray.
How does tartar removal work?
The visit includes a thorough dental examination together with the owner, where we will discuss the clinical findings and subsequently propose a suitable therapy together with a price estimate.
We then begin scaling using hand and ultrasonic scalers to remove plaque and tartar above and below the gum line. Tartar below the gum line causes the most significant periodontal disease, so it is important to remove it thoroughly.
After cleaning and removing tartar, the oral cavity is thoroughly examined and any abnormalities are recorded in the medical report.
Suspicious teeth are x-rayed to confirm or rule out "hidden" disease occurring below the gum level. It is here that we decide whether the tooth can still be saved or not and will have to be extracted. Since it can sometimes be difficult to predict the extent of dental disease before the procedure, we may call you during the procedure to agree on further steps.
Sometimes we take X-rays before the tartar is removed. It mainly concerns specifics, such as a tooth fracture, where an X-ray will tell us whether it is possible to save the tooth or not.
After tartar removal, the teeth are polished with a polishing paste to remove microscopic scratches and reduce the rate of subsequent plaque build-up.
Can I use a sonic toothbrush?
Sometimes you ask us about sonic brushes and tartal removal in dog salons. We have practically nothing against it, on the contrary, we are glad that you are interested in and taking care of your pet. Although you can remove some of the plaque and tartar build-up above the gum line in cooperative dogs, there are four problems:
Only visible calculus above the gum line is removed. This will leave plaque and tartar below the gum line, which will continue to cause periodontal problems.
It is neither possible nor safe to properly clean the inner surfaces of the teeth of a conscious dog.
Using any sharp instrument on tooth enamel will cause microscopic scratches on the surface, which will ultimately damage the tooth surface and lead to other diseases - that's why we always polish the teeth after removing tartar with dental instruments.
If your dog moves suddenly, the sharp instrument can cut the gums and cause pain and bleeding.
How can I prevent tartar build-up after the procedure?
Plaque forms in as little as six hours after brushing your dog's teeth. That is why mechanical cleaning with a brush and paste is important. More information on plaque and stone prevention can be found here.