Periodontal disease is very common in our domestic carnivores. It affects about 80% of dogs and can have serious consequences if allowed to settle. Here is everything you need to know about this infectious disease, what it is due to, what it can cause and how to prevent it …
What is periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease is an infectious disease because it is due to the proliferation of bacteria in the mouth, it is due to dental plaque.
The bacteria on the surface of the teeth with salivary proteins form what is called biofilm -> the bacteria in the biofilm secrete a matrix that forms dental plaque -> dental plaque becomes mineralized and becomes tartar over time.
Periodontal disease becomes more common the older the dog and it is more common in small breed dogs.
It affects the periodontium, that is to say all the supporting tissues of the tooth: gum, cementum, alveolo-dental ligament, alveolar bone …
First, dental plaque and tartar cause gingivitis and can then lead to periodontitis. Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums, it is reversible, however periodontitis once installed is not reversible, it causes loosening of the teeth and bacteria reach the bloodstream.
The signs of periodontal disease are:
- presence of tartar
- bad breath
- excessive salivation
- red and / or swollen gums
- resorption of the gum
- loose teeth
What Are the Risks of Periodontal Disease?
The serious consequences of periodontal disease are linked to the fact that bacteria can reach the bloodstream and spread everywhere in the body:
- heart valve infections, endocarditis
- sepsis and infections of other organs (joints, ENT sphere, etc.)
- dental abscess, jaw fractures, etc.
The lesions of periodontal disease are irreversible so it is essential to prevent the onset of this condition.
Only the descaling carried out by your veterinarian can completely eliminate the tartar present on your dog’s teeth and then you must act to prevent the tartar from reappearing too quickly: remove dental plaque as it forms , by mechanical action (brushing, strips or chewing sticks) or chemical (strips, powders, etc.), very regularly!