How to Treat Gingivitis in Cats
Feline gingivitis can affect cats at any stage and at any age, although it is more common in young cats and adults. Gingivostomatitis is one of the most common problems among middle-aged cats. Gingivitis is the earlies stage of periodontal disease, a condition that seriously affects the gums, teeth and overall health of your feline pet. It is important to treat this condition correctly to prevent it from evolving into greater problems to your cat. In this OneHowTo article we explain how to treat gingivitis in cats.
Feline gingivitis is a disease that produces severe inflammation in the gums of your feline friend. This causes excessive drooling, tooth decay, loss of appetite and weight loss. A cat with this disease will suffer from mouth pain and so will not eat nearly as much as before.
The cause of gingivitis may be associated with different factors such as those indicated below:
- A soft diet
- Having a bad prophylactic dental hygiene
- Autoinmune disease
- Bad-chewing habits
- Crowded teeth
- Feline leukemia
- Feline Immunodeficiency Virus
There is no specific cure for feline chronic gingivitis. Nevertheless, there are many methods to treat the disease. Once finally diagnosed, you must assess the different treatments with your specialist and be quite clear that, despite the measures taken, there may be relapses. From the pharmacological point of view, the cat can be given a broad-spectrum of powerful antibiotics by injection. The most commonly used ones are amoxicillin, clindamycin and metronidazole amongst others.
On the other hand, you can also treat the disease yourself with immunosuppressive drugs such as cyclosporine, prednisone, megestrol acetate or other options that are on the market. Drug treatment should be prescribed by your veterinarian and duly scheduled. Never medicate your cat by yourself without consulting a vet under any circumstances.
Treating gingivitis in felines means you should include monitoring and control to observe all associated side effects for your cat such as hair growth and weight gain among other factors. Also, it is very important to maintain complete oral hygiene. This should be constant for the health of your cat. The use of gels, toothpaste, sprays and even specific pet mouthwashes is recommended to prevent the formation of plaque and tartar. This also helps control related infections.
In many cases, it is necessary to perform a proper cleaning to extract the most eroded sub-gingival tooth. It is very effective to perform a gingivectomy to extract and remove any injured or problematic tissue. When cats do not respond well to this treatment often all the teeth in the cheeks are extracted to improve overall oral health. However, this is an operation that has certain risks and can lead to mouth ulcers, stomatitis and endocarditis among other associated problems.
With regards to treating gingivitis, to have any success you have to clean your cat's teeth daily. With proper and frequent dental hygiene, you will lessen the excess or even the appearance of dental plaque and thus avoid or reduce the corrosive effect of tartar on the cat's teeth.
Another precaution that must be taken into account is that the periodontal disease may be a result of the cat's diet. If you're only feeding your cat soft food, consider changing its diet to dry food. This type of food has a prophylactic effect on your pet's teeth.
It is also recommended that from an early age you accustom your cat to try carrot or apple pieces as rewards. These foods will do a similar function as brushing, and they will reduce plaque accumulation on your cat's teeth. If your cat still does not like it or does not feel right eating these items, there are special snacks on the market designed for the oral hygiene of your feline pet.
Gingivitis is a chronic disease but reversible if the treatment followed is appropriate. Removing plaque from your cat's teeth will reduce the inflammation and the gums will heal. With a system based on surgical removal of plaque, daily oral hygiene and the use of medications as prescribed by your veterinarian, you will get your feline back to normal in no time.
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