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Water Additives

Let me be clear, if you are able to brush your pet's teeth, that is the best solution and you will not need to do anything else. But, the best laid plans of mice and men are often frustrated by our furry friends. This second level prevention is an option if you have not been able to persuade your pet that teeth brushing is a good thing. Not all water additives are created equal. There are two broad groups of products available. Some work on the bacteria while  some work on the calculus that is the long term result of ongoing bacterial infection in your pet's mouth.

The mechanism for type that work on the calculus alone is to prevent the  calculus from sticking to the teeth. Some of them are strange sounding concoctions of seaweed extract or molecular silver salts to get pearly whites visible again. It is important to not that though these products can make the teeth look whiter, they may not do anything for the deeper problem of gum disease. 

The other family of products work on the bacteria.  However, there are many products here that I am cautious with. Just like with humans, the way to prevent gingivitis is with good gum hygiene, not with various antibacterial mouth washes. Water additives that contain chlorhexidine will kill some of the bacteria that is causing the gum infection but in my experience, resistance often builds up to this strong antibacterial product and the gum infection can return with a vengeance. Not only that, these products kill both the good bacteria and the bad, leaving the mouth vulnerable to the resistant bacteria when they come around. Some of these water additives contain high levels of various minerals (iodine) that can lead to health issues.

The most effective products in this category are ones that leave the mouth more aerobic, naturally selecting for healthy bacteria.  The bacteria that cause the gum infection are anerobic, that is, they cannot live with high oxygen levels. So these nasty bacteria hide in the pockets around the teeth and cause gum recession and eventually tooth loss. If we can add extra oxygen to these areas, the bad bacteria cannot thrive and the healthy bacteria do well.  A product that we carry that does these things can be purchased from us on-line by clicking here.