NuVet is one of the few practices in this country recommending full mouth x-rays for all dental patients. Only by looking below the gumline can we find all signs of disease.
For example, the picture on the right shows a tooth with bone loss around the base. This damage would be invisible without dental radiography.
We provide a comprehensive oral health assessment and treatment (COHAT) for dogs and cats when their teeth are cleaned. This involves a full dental chart and visual inspection, plus periodontal probing and x-rays. It makes no sense to place an animal under anaesthesia to clean their teeth, and miss an important problem. If you don’t look (i.e. take x-rays), you may miss problems.
When a pet has a problem with their leg – we do not perform an “orthopaedic.” We ask questions, examine the leg, take x-rays, maybe even CT scans, then we plan any surgery they need. There are many different surgeries to fix many different problems. It should be the same with teeth! We do not do a “dental”. We take a history, examine the mouth, take x-rays, and then plan what surgery is needed. This is what we mean by a comprehensive oral health assessment and treatment (COHAT).
When should we perform x-rays?
- Gum disease – to check for bone loss
- Broken teeth – to check the health of the tooth
- Suspected resorption – to check how much of the tooth is still viable
- Missing teeth – to check for impacted teeth, dentigerous cysts or broken roots
- Lumps or swellings – to check for signs of cancer or abscesses