Cleaning and Polishing
Small animal dentistry has evolved significantly over the years, and so has our approach to treatment.  Tartar buildup and other oral concerns can have a negative effect on your pet’s overall health and life expectancy.  While preventing buildup is the best approach, SCAC offers two levels of cleaning:
  • Anesthetized Cleaning – Routine: Your pet is pre-medicated, anesthesia is induced and maintained on Isoflourane gas via an endotrachial tube.  A thorough cleaning is performed with an ultrasonic scaler, followed by polishing.  A complete oral exam is performed including measurement of gingival pockets and recession.  Teeth with mild buildup qualify for this level.
  • Anesthetized Cleaning – Expanded: Same procedure as above, but used when pets have a moderate to severe level of buildup.
SCAC Dentistry 1       SCAC Dentistry 2
Before                                               After

Intraoral Radiographs

In addition to cleaning, SCAC offers a number of services for oral disease.  One of the most exciting advances in our dentistry services is the use of intraoral x-rays to identify problem areas.  Full mouth x-rays regularly result in the identification of problems that are not noticable to the naked eye such as tooth root abscesses, bone attachment loss, and resorbing teeth (see below).

Figure A below is an example of a dog’s premolar and molar that have experienced significant bone attachment loss (red arrows).  Visually, the patient appeared relatively normal with just a minor amount of gum recession.

SCAC Dentistry 3

Figure B below is an example of a cat that is suffering from resorbing teeth.  The blue arrow points to a tooth that, visually, appeared to be missing as the gums were completely healed over the site.  The red arrow points to a tooth that has experienced complete separation of the back root, though visually, the tooth appeared normal.

SCAC Dentistry 4

Resorbing Teeth 

Though the cause is unknown, many cats, and some dogs, suffer from a condition called resorbing teeth (formerly refered to as Feline Ondontoclastic Resorbing Lesions, or FORL).  The outer surfaces of the tooth erode in one or more places, exposing nerves and creating significant pain.  The condition can begin at the root level or at the crown of a tooth, and will progress over time.  At the most advanced stage resorbing roots are transitioned into healthy bone material and are left alone by performing a crown amputation instead of a root extraction.  This condition is one of the many reasons that intraoral x-rays are a vital tool in assessing your pet’s needs.

SCAC performs extractions when necessary and is equipped for the following:

  • Simple elevation and extraction
  • Multi-root tooth extraction by first reducing the tooth to single roots using a high speed cutting burr handpiece
  • Surgical extraction by creating a gingival flap to expose the bone around the tooth, reducing that bone with a high speed round burr handpiece to expose the roots, root elevation and extraction, smoothing of the remaining bone to eliminate sharp points, followed by surgical closure
  • Crown amputation using a high speed cutting burr handpiece to remove the crown and a round burr to smooth the remaining bone.

If desired, SCAC is happy to provide a referral to a Dental Specialist for advanced treatments such as root canal, vital pulpotimy, or tooth restoration.

Pain Management 

We take a proactive approach to addressing the potential for pain during and after dental procedures.  Our pre-medication protocol includes medications designed to provide pain relief as well as the initial sedation required to begin.  For all regular cleaning and treatment procedures your pet is under general anesthesia and kept at a level that balances safety with pain relief.  When extractions or other treatments are indicated, regional blocks (numbing) are also performed, allowing more extensive treatments to be performed without increaseing general anesthetic depth.  Before treatments begin, your pet is given an injection of a non steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), and will be sent home with several days of medication for pain relief.

(503) 873-5701
P.O. Box 409   874 McClaine Street  Silverton, Oregon 97381

Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:30pm; Saturday 8:00am-1:00pm
24 Hour Emergency Services Available