PLEASE DO NOT!!! The AMVA and the dental veterinary society says RUN from ANY VET advertising no anesthesia cleaning. PLEASE, find a vet who knows what they are doing! The teeth may LOOK cleaner, but the MEDICAL issue is below the gums!
However, performing NPDS on an unanesthetized pet is inappropriate for the following reasons:
1. Dental tartar is firmly adhered to the surface of the teeth. Scaling to remove tartar is accomplished using ultrasonic and sonic power scalers, plus hand instruments that must have a sharp working edge to be used effectively. Even slight head movement by the patient could result in injury to the oral tissues of the patient, and the operator may be bitten when the patient reacts.
2. Professional dental scaling includes scaling the surfaces of the teeth both above and below the gingival margin (gum line), followed by dental polishing. The most critical part of a dental scaling procedure is scaling the tooth surfaces that are within the gingival pocket (the subgingival space between the gum and the root), where periodontal disease is active. Because the patient cooperates, dental scaling of human teeth performed by a professional trained in the procedures can be completed successfully without anesthesia. However, access to the subgingival area of every tooth is impossible in an unanesthetized canine or feline patient. Removal of dental tartar on the visible surfaces of the teeth has little effect on a pet's health, and provides a false sense of accomplishment. The effect is purely cosmetic.
3. Inhalation anesthesia using a cuffed endotracheal tube provides three important advantages… the cooperation of the patient with a procedure it does not understand, elimination of pain resulting from examination and treatment of affected dental tissues during the procedure, and protection of the airway and lungs from accidental aspiration.
4. A complete oral examination, which is an important part of a professional dental scaling procedure, is not possible in an unanesthetized patient. The surfaces of the teeth facing the tongue cannot be examined, and areas of disease and discomfort are likely to be missed.
Safe use of an anesthetic or sedative in a dog or cat requires evaluation of the general health and size of the patient to determine the appropriate drug and dose, and continual monitoring of the patient.
) Periodontal problems affect more than 80 percent of dogs over the age of four, according to Hometown Animal Hospital and Dental Clinic veterinarian Jan Bellows.
University of Penn
Need for Anesthesia and Frequency of Professional Dental Cleanings
Need for Anesthesia
In order to perform a thorough periodontal examination, dental radiography, scaling and polishing, gingival curettage and root planing, the pet must be under general anesthesia. Anesthetic gas and oxygen are delivered through an endotracheal tube, thus ensuring pain-free procedures and also protecting the airways from aspirating fluids or debris. Owners of pets naturally are concerned when anesthesia is required for their pet. However, anesthesia-free dentistry performed by untrained individuals is inappropriate for several reasons, including:
Significant safety concerns for the patient and operator.
Insufficient cleaning of inaccessible tooth surfaces.
No debridement of periodontal pockets.
Oral discomfort and serious pain.
Accidental aspiration of debris that can result in pneumonia and death.
Furthermore, it is illegal for anybody but licensed veterinarians or supervised and trained veterinary technicians to practice veterinary medicine. Although anesthesia will never be 100% risk-free, modern anesthetic and patient evaluation techniques used in veterinary hospitals minimize the risks, and millions of dentistry and oral surgery procedures are safely performed each year. The American Veterinary Dental College adopted a position statement on companion animal dental scaling without anesthesia.
Anesthesia is essential for veterinary dental procedures, to ensure that the procedure can be completed successfully.
Fear of general anesthesia is a natural concern voiced by many owners when a dental procedure is recommended. However, the risk of chronic oral infection, for example, is far greater than the risk of an anesthetic complication.
btw… have dog with CUPS, an autoimmune issue. I have to have her teeth cleaned every 3 mos. I wish I didn't know so much about it. 😞