Use any possible opportunity to examine the oral cavity and teeth:
- All conscious examination if the patient allows it
- Consider sedation if no possibility of a conscious examination and there is concerns about a problem (a similar approach to that of many other organ systems)
- Any sedation or general anaesthesia for any other indication
- Check the oral cavity and pharynx before intubation
There is often alternatives to extraction to save strategically important teeth whether periodontal disease or damaged crowns. Do not do anything only because we can!
Only two treatment options for teeth with exposed pulp should ever be considered: Extraction or root canal treatment. What might appear to be an insignificant crown fracture in cats could in fact expose the pulp. Because crown fractures are always cased by traumatic injury, many insurers would cover the cost of treating these injuries.
More than 90% of discoloured teeth have devitalised pulp and should be treated (either extraction or root canal treatment) or at least have radiographic investigation. Again, this is caused by an injury and many insurers would cover the treatment cost.
Radiography is indicated in all dentistry procedures. If full mouth extractions are considered for treatment of FCGS, radiography is essential to ensure complete extraction of all root remnants.
If any condition would be painful to a human, it is unlikely to NOT hurt an animal, whether they admit that (or more likely whether we hear what they are saying) or not. Oral ulcers are extremely painful and should be investigated and treated aggressively and immediately. Analgesia immediately.
Teeth impinging on soft tissue is painful and should be treated without delay. Analgesia immediately.
Exposed dentin (whether caused by abrasion, attrition, enamel defects or fracture) is or might become painful so investigation, at least, is indicated. Treatment is usually indicated.
Intraoral and other splinting techniques should be strongly considered as alternatives to other orthopaedic techniques: It usually looks after occlusion and teeth more effectively and is often far less invasive.
We strongly advise biopsy and radiography of any oral mass. Early intervention could accommodate curative surgery and the patients usually live comfortable, functional lives even after invasive oral surgery.