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I have been teaching surgical nursing and during a recent oronasal session we covered dentistry.

The class is varied, but most of the students have at least two years in practice at a variety of first opinion and referral practices – yet many were still surprised at the options clients and pets have for dental treatment.

There was particular surprise that pets can have root canal treatment or crowns fitted, so it would appear that recent advances in pet dental care are maybe not being advertised as much as they could be.

It may be that these discussions happen in the consult room and so nurses aren’t fully aware of the referral options if advanced dentistry is not carried out in-house. However, as nurses can be key at providing preventative dental health care, it would seem prudent to ensure they are educated on the options if preventative care is not enough.

Could referral dental practices provide an overview of their services that nurses could have access to?

The Veterinary Dental Referrals website includes a list of typical services, which provides a starting point for those wanting to find out more about the procedures. There is also a BVNA course in dental nursing if you want to take things further.

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