It isn’t just at home where pet dentistry has improved. At Charter Veterinary Hospital, we enjoy having a state of the art theatre. The dental theatre is fully set to perform all but the must specialist dental procedures. One piece of equipment that we have recently invested in is a digital dental x‐ray unit. This amazing bit kit allows us to take very accurate pictures of any given tooth and the surrounding structures. We use a tiny x-ray plate that can be placed into your pets’ mouth. With the click of a button an image will appear on our monitor in just a few seconds.
Much like an iceberg, a large percentage of pets teeth are out of sight. Lying below the gum line, it can be impossible to assess the tooth roots and surrounding structures without x-rays.
Examples of cases which benefit from dental radiographs would include cats suffering from FORLS (Feline odontoclastic resorptive lesions) and dogs with tooth root infections or abscesses (periapical disease).
FORLs are unfortunately a very common lesion that can be found effecting domestic cats. The underlying cause for them remains unknown. FORLs cause the outer structures of a tooth to be eaten away. Once the enamel and dentine of a tooth are eroded the sensitive pulp cavity is exposed to the outer world. As you may appreciate, this is an extermely painful condition and can be likened to having an extremely sensitive tooth all the time. They commonly occur at the junction between tooth and gum are characterised by a fleshy pink appearance where you would expect to see tooth! They can occur on both clean and dirty teeth.
It is helpful to take radiographs in all these cases to assess the roots.