Feline Stomatitis Treatment

The feline stomatitis treatment involves procedures which need to be performed under anesthesia, as well as daily aftercare and better oral hygiene. Feline stomatitis, meaning inflammation of soft tissue in the cat's mouth, is difficult to cure and control as its causes are not completely known and the condition tends to be chronic. 

Feline stomatitis is a very painful condition and often causes changes in your pet's behavior, making it more aggressive. In some cases home care is not possible, as the cat will only cooperate under anesthesia.

Causes of Feline Stomatitis

The known causes of feline stomatitis are:

  • Presence of a foreign object in cat's mouth
  • Viral  or bacterial infections
  • Kidney malfunction
  • Hormonal disorders (such as diabetes)
  • An allergic response to various stimuli

Symptoms of Feline Stomatitis

  • Excess of saliva, sometimes tinged with blood
  • Gums bleeding
  • Halitosis (bad breath)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Mouth pain causing discomfort when opening mouth
  • Lack of self-grooming
  • Behavioral changes (cat becomes irritable, aggressive)
  • Soft tissue in the mouth reddened and tender

Feline Stomatitis Treatment by Removing Infection Sources

When the condition is caused by infection, the veterinarian will begin the treatment by cleaning the cat's mouth under anesthesia, removing plaque and calculus, applying fluoride and cleaning roots.

In worst cases, tooth extractions are performed. Although this sounds drastic, sometimes all cheek teeth (molars and premolars) have to be extracted in order to remove all sources of bacteria. If this does not stop the infection, all teeth have to be removed together with their roots.

X-rays might be necessary in order to insure no bone fragments are left in the gums.

Veterinarian dentists claim that, even with no teeth left, the cat will still be able to eat dry food using the bony ridges or their palate.

Also, some antibiotic will be prescribed to fight the infection.

Treatment of Feline Stomatitis

If there are ulcerations, they will be cauterized with silver nitrate. For some cats laser therapy also helps cure the area inside the mouth.

Steroids or cyclosporine are often prescribed in order to reduce inflammation by suppressing the immune response. Some cases will call for interferon, which is more successful with unresponsive cases.

After these treatments, most cats will be comfortable enough to be cared for at home.

Daily Aftercare in Feline Stomatitis Treatment

Daily aftercare is compulsory as the treatment eliminates the symptoms but cannot ensure total elimination of the causes of stomatitis.

The removal of plaque is essential for the success of the treatment, as plaque contains 80% bacteria, so daily brushing of the cat's teeth is important. You might also need to wash your cat's mouth with a mild antibacterial solution (i.e. 0.2% chlorhexidine).

Keep your cat on a specific diet, probably liquid or soft food until the soft tissues are completely healed. Provide vitamin supplements.

As feline stomatitis is a chronic condition and is hard to keep under control, you will need to take back your cat to the veterinarian every to  34 months.