Oh…I’m so anxious! I just found a new family a few weeks ago and now Mom says I have to go to the doctor to make sure I’m healthy. She has a ton of questions about what type of food I should eat, how much I should weigh, and what vaccinations I need. One of her big questions, though, is why I chew so funny? She says I move my jaw weird when I’m eating.
At the doctor’s office, she went through her list of questions and the doctor noted that my mouth was painful, which was why I chewed funny. The doctor was right. I love to eat, though, so I wasn’t going to tell anyone that my mouth hurt. All I wanted to do was eat. The doctor said I needed to have some dentistry and dental radiographs (x-rays) of my teeth. They were very concerned about disease underneath my gum line.
A few weeks later, I went in for the dentistry and they were right. I had a large amount of dental tartar and bacteria that had built up on my teeth, which had developed an abscess around one of the roots of my teeth (black arrows). Because I am small, I don’t have much jaw bone. The abscess ate through my jaw bone and caused it to fracture (black circle). That’s why I ate so funny.
The doctor spoke with Mom and told her it was very important to remove the bad tooth and to clean out the abscess and infection in my mouth so the jaw would heal. Then, I would wear a specific apparatus – a tape muzzle- that would hold my jaw in place for the next six weeks during healing. In the meantime, I would need to eat “protein shakes”. Essentially, Mom was to blend all my food into a liquid diet. This allowed me to get the nutrition without any jaw movement and healing to occur.
It was a LONG six weeks, but my jaw has healed and I chew normally. I can now strut my stuff and let everybody around me know that I am the boss! Now- time to go get some more snuggles!