Many children are born with lip and tongue ties, conditions which can hamper their speech, breathing, and make feeding virtually impossible for infants. Thankfully, both of these problems can be easily solved here at The Dental Specialists. In a single appointment, we can remove the tie and renew your child’s oral function for a lifetime to come. To learn more and schedule an appointment, contact us today.
Everyone’s mouth contains three small bands of tissue called frenulums. One is under the tongue that anchors it to the floor of the mouth, and two others attach each lip to the gums. These develop during gestation and normally thin and recede before birth, but sometimes, they can be so short or thick that they prevent a child from being able to use their mouth properly. These conditions are more often found and boys and can run in families.
Children with lip and tongue ties tend to have a lot of trouble breastfeeding. A child may have difficulty latching on due to discomfort, which can prohibit the steady flow of milk, leading to slow weight gain. Feeding may also cause a baby with a tongue or lip tie to become fussy because it hurts so much (and it likely isn’t a pleasant experience for the parent either). A child can develop a space between their front teeth as the result of a lip tie as well, plus they might have problems speaking because they lack mobility in their lips and tongue.
Fortunately, the solution for a lip/tongue tie is relatively straightforward—the offending tissue needs to be loosened or snipped. This can usually be accomplished in a few minutes with the help of local anesthetic. Thanks to modern techniques, most children find it easy to remain comfortable during and after the treatment. A child may need some help in order to relearn how to use their tongue and lips properly, and we can provide exercises to speed this process along.