Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Teeth: calculus

Synonym(s): Dental calculus

Contributor(s): MarkThompson

Introduction

  • Cause: mineralized bacterial plaque deposits; predisposed by the soft nature of convenience diets; periodontal disease follows if deposits are left.
  • Signs: halitosis; visible deposits on teeth.
  • Diagnosis: halitosis; visible deposits on teeth.
  • Treatment: scaling/polishing.
  • Prevention: dietary changes/teeth cleaning.
    Follow the diagnostic tree for Halitosis Halitosis.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Mineralization of plaque deposits takes place through calcium and phosphorus salts present in saliva.

Specific

  • Feeding of convenience pet foods which have little self-cleansing action.

Pathophysiology

  • Dental plaque mineralizes to form dental calculus.
  • Convenience diets (require little mastication, sticky in nature, lack fiber) contribute to build-up of debris on surfaces of teeth.
  • Canned food leads to calculus faster than dry food.
  • Dry food has a better self-cleansing action.
  • Dry food may stimulate more salivary flow which decreases the rate of plaque formation.
  • Food debris, leucocytes, micro-organisms and desquamated epithelial cells → dental/bacterial plaque.
  • Bacteria will invade and proliferate within matrix of plaque.
  • Mineralized plaque through phosphorus and calcium salts in saliva → dental calculus.
  • Rough surface of calculus encourages further build-up of plaque.
  • Periodontal disease Periodontal disease will develop if calculus not removed.

Timecourse

  • Plaques becomes established within 24 hours.
  • Early calculus deposition is often visible within months of eruption of permanent teeth.

Diagnosis

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to purchase a 30 day trial, or Login

Treatment

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to purchase a 30 day trial, or Login

Prevention

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to purchase a 30 day trial, or Login

Outcomes

This article is available in full to registered subscribers

Sign up now to purchase a 30 day trial, or Login

Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

Other sources of information

  • Wiggs, Lobprise & Lippincott-Raven (1997)Veterinary Dentistry Principles and Practice.pp 191-197.


ADDED