The “Tooth” of the Matter: Why Dental X-Rays Are Important for Pet Oral Health
When it comes to your pet’s oral health, we want the full picture of what is happening above and below the gumline. There is no better way to determine the extent of periodontal disease than by taking full-mouth dental X-rays. This process gives us a complete “picture” in more ways than one. Here are three reasons why dental X-rays are so important for your four-legged friend’s oral health.
#1: More than half the tooth structure lies below the gumline
While brushing your pet’s teeth is great for minimizing plaque and tartar accumulation, a toothbrush can’t reach below the gum line, which is where roughly 60% of the tooth structure lies. That means dental X-rays are essential for discovering potential dental problems that lie below the gum line.
#2: Painful periodontal problems may only be discovered on X-rays
Although you might think your pet would stop eating if they suffered from a dental issue, pets are incredible at hiding signs of pain and illness. Tooth-root abscesses, tooth fractures, retained teeth, and bone loss may cause your pet to have a decreased appetite, but not always. Dental X-rays are often the only way to tell if your furry pal has one of these oral health problems.
#3: Dental X-rays allow us to gauge the severity of your pet’s dental disease
Dental X-rays give us the full picture of your pet’s oral health and provide more information than a visual exam. X-rays are an important diagnostic tool to unearth hidden dental diseases that can be the precursor to such problems as heart disease, kidney disease, and jawbone loss.