Archive for the ‘periodontal disease’ Category

Does Your Dog Have Bad Breath? Free Dental Check-ups for Dogs in the UK

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

In the United Kingdom, March 2010 is the launch of “Oral Care Month“.  Vets are teaming up with a dog food company to give free dental checks for canines.  The veterinary services at Bristol University said that the purpose of these free exams was to put emphasis on the problem of gum disease in dogs.   In adult dogs, gum infections are the most common problem, and it affects 80% of dogs over age three.  That’s only one out of five dogs that is gum disease free!  Unfortunately, only TWO PERCENT of owners employ the use of a regular oral maintenance routine for their pets.

Hopefully, Oral Care Month helps educate pet owners on how important it is to maintain regular dental care, which includes brushing daily and offering a dog chews.  Both of these help to diminish the amount of plaque and tartar buildup in the oral cavity.  Chews can reduce plaque buildup by up to 60%, and tartar buildup as much as 80%.  Also, people will be learning what gum disease symptoms to look for in their pets, like bad breath, picky eating, and so on.  Sometimes these symptoms can signify a health condition, and should not be accepted as ‘normal’.

It is said that dogs need their dental health attended to just like humans.  When a dog hits age three, 80% have gum disease, which is caused by excessive tartar and plaque.  So, if you have a dog and live in the UK, this is the month to take advantage of a free checkup!

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Brushing a Dog’s (or Cat’s) Teeth

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

brush dog's teeth

Does your dog have bad breath? Well, maybe you are not employing the use of proper oral hygiene. After all, us humans need to maintain a level of oral care so that we don’t have halitosis. Also, just like people, dogs and cats can get gum disease–and if a dog or cat’s gums are infected and abscessed, bacteria can enter the bloodstream, causing liver, kidney, and even heart malfunctions. So, what’s a good way to brush your best friend’s teeth?

Here are some tips for brushing your pet’s teeth:

#1 Start off slowly. Make sure to use a toothpaste formula that is specifically made for animals, since human toothpaste can give stomach upsets to animals. Have your pet lick the paste off of your finger, and you might need to try a few different flavors to find one that your pet likes.

#2 Once you can get toothpaste into the animal’s mouth, use a slight amount on your finger and run it across the dog or cat’s teeth. This might even take several days to get your pet to do this agreeably. Once your pet is fine with you doing this to its teeth, use a toothbrush (made for pets) and make small circles on the gum line. Don’t brush too hard!

#3 Be sure to cheer on your pet and express approval during this process. Afterward, you could also give your pet a treat, playtime, a walk, etc., so it will think of brushing as a positive moment.

#4 In order to practice proper oral hygiene with your pet, try to brush your pet’s teeth every day.

Here are some warning signs to look for in your pet’s mouth:

  1. Yellow or brown tartar, especially where the teeth and gums meet
  2. Red, swollen, bleeding, inflamed, tender, and/or receding gums
  3. Chronic halitosis
  4. Teeth that are chipped/broken
  5. Tooth resorption (especially common in cats)- a very painful condition in which the tooth dissolves
  6. A change in the animal’s diet, chewing habits and appetite can signify depression (along with pawing at the face/mouth).

Also, don’t forget to try this oral rinse for dogs and cats that helps prevent plaque and tartar buildup.  Be sure to practice good oral hygiene with your pet, so that the both of you can have great smiles!

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Bad Breath is a Symptom of Gum Disease in Dogs and Cats

Friday, February 19th, 2010

bad breath in pets

Even though February is National Pet Dental Health Month, proper oral hygiene for pets should be practiced year-round. Bad breath in your pet can be a symptom of an oral health dilemma. Taking your dog or cat to the veterinarian is one of the most important things that you can do to prevent and treat periodontal (gum) disease in your pet. According to sources, an estimated 68% of cats and 78% of dogs that are 3 years of age and older have a form of oral disease.

In recognition of National Pet Dental Health Month, more information is being released for pet owners and vets to help improve or maintain a good level of oral hygiene for their animals. It reminds us of the old saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” All breeds of these animals are susceptible to developing periodontal disease. Studies show that the top breeds of dogs that are predisposed to getting gum disease are the Toy Poodle, Yorkshire Terrier, Maltese, Pomeranian, Shetland Sheepdog, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Papillion, Standard Poodle, Dachshund and Havanese. The disease is most prominent in the following types of cats: the Himalayan, Siamese, and Persian.

Each year that your pet is alive, the risks of developing the disease actually increase 20%. Vets everywhere should insist that pet owners should treat the disease if it is diagnosed, so that it does not become serious.  Let’s not forget that TheraBreath has an excellent oral health formula specifically made for dogs and cats. Stop bad breath in dogs and cats today!

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Secrets from Dentists

Thursday, February 18th, 2010

kids bad breath

There are many things that people may not realize regarding oral care and its relationship to overall health.  Dental health is a very important thing and should not be neglected.  Here are certain things that you may not have known about dental care and dentists:

Pay More Attention

  • Just because your mouth may not hurt, does not mean it is healthy. 
  • Your oral health can affect the rest of your body
  • People with HEALTHY gums should go to the dentist twice a year.  Most people do not.  If your gums are NOT healthy, you should go even more. 
  • People tend to brush their front teeth more, and many people have periodontal disease in their back teeth because of this
  • People tend to spend around 2-3 minutes total brushing per day, even though proper oral care requires at least ten minutes of brushing and flossing each day.  Kids tend to spend even less time than adults. 

Bad Breath

  • Chewing gum or mints is not going to cover up the smell from smoking cigarettes.  This is because the smell is deeply ingrained in the mouth and gum tissues.
  • Most dentists won’t tell you if you have halitosis unless you ask.
  • People need to floss since brushing does not go deep into the gums.  If a person brushes and flosses properly, gets regular cleanings, and STILL has bad breath, then he or she should check into diet and health complications.

Children’s Teeth

  • Dentists may secretly blame parents when their kids’ teeth go bad.
  • Cavity-causing bacteria CAN be spread from person-to-person via saliva.  This includes parents to children– if a parent tastes a baby’s food, and puts the same spoon back into the baby’s mouth, the baby is at risk.
  • Children with dental problems, like toothaches, tend to have more problems in school.
  • There’s a significant risk of infection with any kind of mouth piercing if it is not performed in a sterile environment.  Also, tongue piercings tend to chip the front teeth.

Patient Concerns

  • Having metal fillings removed can release more mercury than leaving them in.  Metal fillings are much more durable than tooth-colored fillings.
  • People are exposed to more radiation standing outside for an hour than they are when they have dental X-rays taken.
  • People are getting teeth pulled that don’t need to be just because they can’t afford to fix them.
  • Very few insurance companies cover dental implants, even though they’re better than dentures
  • Teeth that are not aligned correctly can cause migraines
  • Bleeding gums is one of the first signs of diabetes
  • Did you know that teeth get whiter when they dry out?  If you go to the dentist to get your teeth whitened, and your mouth is left open for an hour, the teeth could be two shades whiter from dehydration alone. 
  • Cosmetic dentistry only works in a healthy mouth.  Always treat your gum disease first.
  • When you go to the dentist, check to see if the magazines in the waiting area are up-to-date…this shows if they pay attention to detail.

Here is an interesting quote by dentist Damian Dachowski: “When someone meets you for the first time, the first thing they notice is eyes. Second is teeth, and third is hair. But people spend way more money on their hair than their teeth.”

Source: Reader’s Digest

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Is Bad Breath a Warning Sign of Major Illnesses?

Monday, February 15th, 2010

bad breath

Bad breath (halitosis), especially if its chronic, can sometimes be a symptom of a much more major dilemma. It is very important that people do not overlook this problem, because it can be a sign of a terminal illness. Dental experts have linked halitosis to everything from pneumonia, bronchitis, chronic sinus infections to liver problems, kidney problems, and diabetes. People who have gastritis can have halitosis because of their stomach’s high acidic levels.

Unfortunately, most people do not regard bad breath as a serious problem, and just try to disguise it with peppermint or mouthwash. Halitosis has also been linked to chronic acid reflux and constipation. If one is practicing good oral hygiene, and avoiding foods that cause strong odors like petai, onions, etc., then it is possible that one has a problem that is more than just bad breath.

Many people will find that chewing gum only hides the bad breath and bad tastes temporarily. According to dental experts, 80% of bad breath sufferers have a mouth-related illness causing the problem; however, few people actually make regular visits to the dentist as needed. Tooth decay, cavities, gingivitis, dry mouth (xerostamia, caused by the lack of saliva), and oral cancer all cause halitosis. If a person has gum disease and does not treat it, it can lead to serious damage to the gums and jawbone. Some sources say that mouthwashes containing alcohol have been linked to oral cancer!  TheraBreath is an example of a mouthwash that does NOT have alcohol as an ingredient.

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