The Pet Doctor

Caring for Your Cat's Oral Health Is about More Than Their Teeth

If you think that the only reason you need to take care of your cat's oral health is because of their teeth, you should think again. If you take good care of your cat's oral health, you may not need to worry about these problems. Read on to learn about how your kitty could be in for some seriously nasty health problems if their oral health isn't up to date.

1. Severe Gum Disease

One of the reasons that cats lose their teeth when they have poor oral health is actually poor gum health, rather than cavities. When gum disease progresses to a certain point, there is usually some periodontitis, which can cause your cat's teeth can fall out. However, the problems with gum disease don't stop there.

When severe gum disease goes on for long enough, it can cause the erosion and breakdown of bone in your cat's jaw. This can't be repaired and is permanent damage. However, you can avoid it entirely just by taking good care of your cat's oral health.

2. Infections

Another possible problem is that your cat could have infections in their mouth, neck, face, or even brain. Severe gum disease is a chronic infection that can't be beaten by the immune system alone. When it's allowed to fester for long enough, this infection can potentially spread to other neighboring areas, as listed above. These types of infections can put your cat's life at risk, not just their teeth. Once they develop, hospitalization, antibiotics, and potentially surgery may be required in order to save your cat's life.

3. Kidney Disease

If all that wasn't scary enough, there's a chance that chronic gum disease is also a trigger for a life-threatening condition: kidney disease. The exact link between these two conditions isn't yet fully understood, but vets and scientists think that the bacteria responsible for gum disease and the chronic inflammation caused by it may potentially cause kidney disease.

The theory goes that chronic inflammation is bad for the entire body, and can even cause issues like cancer. In addition, since your cat's kidneys are responsible for filtering its entire blood supply, any bacteria in their blood will be guaranteed to reach the kidneys, where it can cause scar tissue and even tissue death.

Taking care of your cat's teeth and gums isn't an option. If you know that your cat has a dental problem or just haven't had their teeth cleaned professionally for a long time, it's time to change that. Contact pet dental care services to learn more.