Laser-Focused On Our Littlest Patients
Frenectomy is the medical term for a tongue tie or lip tie. These conditions occur when soft tissue remains connected to a child’s lip or tongue. Both tongue ties and lip happen during pregnancy, when a thin piece of tissue, the frenual, connects to the tongue or upper lip. When this happens, it causes several issues, including problems with breastfeeding, speech, and more.
At Haring Pediatric Dental, we use the latest laser technology to correct these issues. Our pediatric dental specialist performs the procedures with ease, even on the littlest newborn patients. The laser technology allows us to do frenectomies on patients, as the laser makes precise cuts through the soft tissue releasing the lip and tongue ties. This is done with a precise beam of light, which minimizes bleeding, pain, risk of infection, and stress on both the child and parent. The procedure is so effective that some patients do not need sedation.
Most infants breastfeed right after the procedure, but others take a little time. It is essential to follow the doctor’s instructions, keep follow-up appointments, and be diligent with any stretching exercises or appointments with other specialists (speech therapist, lactation specialist, etc.)
Frenectomies are life-changing procedures for children, and the benefits last for a lifetime. These procedures prevent or treat issues with eating, speaking as children grow. Call us today to schedule an appointment with one of our pediatric dentists.
Effects of a Tongue or Lip Tie on Development
Symptoms of a tongue-tied infant during breastfeeding and bottle feeding include:
• Inability to latch
• Unsustained latch
• Poor endurance
• Excessive gas/hiccups
• Constant nursing
• Poor weight gain
For toddlers eating solid food, symptoms include:
• Choking while eating
• Poor weight gain
• Diet selectivity (soft food only)
• Poor lip closing
• Inability to consume age-appropriate foods
For older children, a tongue or lip tie may affect the ability to speak and form words, resulting in:
• Frustration with communication
• Inability to produce certain sounds
• Avoidance of certain words
• Unwillingness to speak
You may also notice the following dental/oral effects:
• Lower teeth inverted
• Diastema (space) between upper and lower front permanent teeth
• Tooth decay due to inability to move lip for adequate toothbrush placement
• Open bite
To learn more about laser correction for tongue and lips ties, get in touch today!