May 18, 2022

Both you and your pet cat are vulnerable to many of the same health concerns, including dental difficulties. Though you may struggle with cavities in your teeth due to decay, cats have distinct tooth deterioration. This condition, known as feline tooth resorption, leads to painful, cavity-like lesions that compromise the teeth’s strength. Feline tooth resorption is typical as cats age, affecting up to 60% of the adult cat population and 75% of senior cats. As a concerned pet owner, you’ll want to educate yourself about this tooth issue.

Types and Stages of Tooth Resorption

Tooth resorption is classified into two different types: Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 tooth resorption protects most tooth structures but leaves dental flaws inside the crown or root. The only treatment alternative for teeth suffering from Type 1 resorption is surgical extraction. On the other hand, type 2 resorption occurs when the tooth’s root is removed and replaced by bone. 

Coronectomy, also known as crown amputation, is a common treatment for Type 2 tooth resorption. The moment tooth resorption is diagnosed in a cat, regular oral cleanings under anesthesia every 6-9 months are necessary. If you would like to discuss your cat’s dental health, you can ask your vet or visit their wellness page online for further details.

Causes

Although recorded cases have increased in recent years, nobody knows why feline tooth resorption occurs. Genetic factors may influence which felines have this condition. Periodontal disease, characterized by persistent inflammation of the dental ligaments and gum tissue, might have a role in Type 1 resorption. The probable reason or contributor to feline tooth resorption is dietary issues such as high acid levels or nutritional deficiencies. 

Signs

An early stage of feline tooth resorption may only exhibit gingivitis, with blood in your cat’s water or food dish. As the complication advances, you may see cavities or fractures in the affected teeth. Cats naturally mask discomfort to avoid possible risks. However, you can determine whether your cat is in pain from tooth resorption or other oral disorders. 

Keep an eye out for drooling, mood swings, and avoidance of favorite persons or things. If your cat shows indications of a sudden change in eating habits, you need to contact your veterinarian and schedule an appointment at this vet clinic to examine their condition.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Your veterinarian can identify feline tooth resorption by giving your cat general anesthesia and obtaining dental X-rays. A crown and root checkup may help establish the condition’s development while ruling out other potential dental issues. The extent of your cat’s tooth resorption will determine the medical treatment. If your cat’s teeth are slightly damaged, a vet specializing in veterinary dentistry may recommend filling the holes. However, resorptive lesions may occur even after filling.

Therefore this approach should only be used as a temporary solution. Resorption-affected teeth will eventually need to be extracted. In Type 1 tooth resorption, your veterinarian will normally remove the entire tooth, reducing pain and gum irritation. When a cat has Type 2 tooth resorption, the doctor removes just the crown, leaving the roots intact.

Final Thoughts

Because the reasons for feline tooth resorption are unknown, veterinarians can not advise prevention treatments. The possible connection between this illness and periodontal disease should encourage you to clean your cat’s teeth at home and professionally. Dietary adjustments may reduce your cat’s risk of tooth resorption. Ask your vet whether your cat needs a different special diet or supplements.