Patients who have tongue ties suffer from a condition that limits the movement of the tongue. This is due to the frenulum- the piece of tissue that connects the tongue to the floor of the mouth- forming improperly. The condition can be caused by the frenulum being too thin, tight, or long. Tongue-tie can lead to many problems, including trouble feeding infants and facial and oral development issues.
Here are some things our dentist at Blossom Family Dental Care wants parents to know about tongue-tie in infants and children.
How to Identify Tongue-Tie
There are a couple of ways to identify tongue ties. In infants, our Spruce Grove dentist looks for the following:
● A thick frenulum
● Difficulty feeding
● Excessive drooling
● Challenges moving and raising the tongue
● Heart-shaped tongue
In adults and older children, our dentist near you will look for the following:
● Trouble eating
● Problems kissing
● Inability to stick out tongue
● Difficulties speaking
If you notice that your child is having trouble breastfeeding, you should visit Blossom Family Dental Care as soon as possible, as improper feeding can put both mother and baby at risk. In older children, speech difficulties can cause trouble with development and learning.
What Are the Treatments for Tongue-Tie?
The most common tongue-tie treatment in Spruce Grove is a minor surgical procedure known as a frenectomy. This is a very simple procedure that can easily be performed on infants.
When you visit Blossom Family Dental Care for tongue-tie treatment near you, our dentist will use a laser to quickly and efficiently separate the frenulum from the tongue. The laser does not cut the tissue, making it safer than traditional surgery, which uses scalpels. Mothers can hold their infants during the procedure so that they remain calm and feel safe in their mother’s arms.
The healing process is also quick because the laser cauterizes the site when it separates the frenulum from the tongue. This means there is no need for stitches, lowering the chances of infection or bleeding.
In severe cases, a frenuloplasty may be recommended. This is a procedure that allows for further repairs to be done and is performed under general anesthesia.
What Are the Benefits of a Frenectomy?
As mentioned above, tongue-tie can lead to many issues, especially concerning your child’s overall well-being due to breastfeeding challenges. There are many reasons a frenectomy should be done, such as:
● Stimulating milk production
● Allowing for successful breastfeeding
● Lowering the risks of tooth decay and gum disease
● Reducing the risks of choking
● Avoiding speech development issues
Although tongue-tie can be frustrating for both mother and child, it is easily treated and diagnosed. A quick examination by our experienced dentist will help you determine if your infant has a tongue tie, and we can easily set up an appointment for a frenectomy. It is always best to seek help from a dental professional when you notice any signs of difficulty when breastfeeding, trouble with speech, or excessive drooling in your infant or child.
If you have any more questions or concerns about tongue-tie or frenectomies, do not hesitate to contact our dedicated dental professionals at Blossom Family Dental Care. Please get in touch with us to book an appointment today! We are happy to answer any questions and help alleviate your frustrations.