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Lip and Tongue-Tie Treatment – Long Beach, NY

Correct a Restricted Tongue Through Laser Frenectomy


Are you struggling to nurse your baby? Does it seem like no matter what you do you and your baby can’t get the hang of breastfeeding? One possible issue could be a lip or tongue-tie in your baby’s mouth. This extra tissue, called a frenulum, could be holding them back from latching properly, which in turn could slow down their growth and development. Fortunately, Dr. Glen’s Happy Teeth has a gentle, effective solution for lip and tongue-ties! Give us a call to learn how laser frenectomies can help you both have a better nursing experience.

infant with a lip or tongue tie

Why Choose Dr. Glen’s Happy Teeth for Frenectomies/Lip and Tongue-Tie Treatment?

How Do Lip and Tongue Ties Develop?

mom and baby who has developed a lip or tongue-tie in Long Beach

A lip or tongue tie is the result of underdeveloped soft tissues in the mouth during gestation. Normally, these connective tissues disappear in the womb as the baby grows and reaches maturity before birth, but sometimes they remain thick after arrival. If this tissue is excessively restrictive, the tongue and/or lip may not be able to do basic essential functions. After birth, the frenulum does not change or improve naturally over time, meaning it must undergo treatment for the patient to see correction.

Why is it Important to Treat Lip & Tongue Ties?

a smiling baby that needs to have a lip or tongue-tie in Long Beach treated

When a frenulum is tight or thick, it can present several problems. Right away, a lip or tongue tie can prevent the baby’s tongue from lifting up properly and creating the necessary suction to breastfeed. As a result, they may bite down on the nipple or fail to gain weight. Later in life, lip and tongue ties can interfere with the child’s ability to speak clearly and accurately, lead to sleep apnea problems, and negatively affect their oral development.

Lip & Tongue Tie Treatment

infant that has received lip or tongue-tie treatment in Long Beach

The concept of lip and tongue-tie treatment is simple—we need to remove the tissue holding the tongue or lip. Traditionally, this involved giving the patient a local anesthetic, cutting the tissue with a scalpel, and a recovery period following the procedure. However, at Dr. Glen’s Happy Teeth, we have a soft tissue laser, which gently and precisely severs the tissue with very little bleeding or discomfort. In fact, most of the time we don’t have to use a local anesthetic at all! With this treatment method, you may notice instant improvement in their lip or tongue function.

Lip & Tongue-Tie FAQs

close up of baby smiling

How Should I Prepare My Baby for a Frenectomy?

Preparing your baby for a frenectomy is simple and doesn't require much. Keep both yourself and your baby calm to avoid extra stress. It's best to feed your baby about 60-90 minutes before the procedure so they're ready to nurse or feed afterward.

In the days leading up to the frenectomy, you can do some exercises with your baby to help them practice suction with their tongue. For example, gently place a clean finger on their tongue and allow them to suck on it. Then, gently pull it away, encouraging them to work a little harder to keep it in. You can also gently rub a clean finger along their lower gums, which helps them learn important lateral functions after the procedure.

Is My Child Old Enough to Get Lip or Tongue-Tie Treatment?

Believe it or not, there is essentially no age minimum for this procedure. It can even be performed a few days after birth! While the thought of your baby undergoing a procedure may seem daunting, it's important to address lip or tongue-tie early on. Delaying treatment won't make the issue go away on its own. By addressing it sooner rather than later, your baby can experience improved oral function and breastfeeding, leading to better overall health and development. So, if you suspect your child has lip or tongue tie, it's best to consult with our team promptly.

What Could Happen If My Child Doesn’t Get Treatment for a Lip or Tongue-Tie?

If your child doesn't receive treatment for a lip or tongue-tie, several complications can arise. Initially, they may struggle with breastfeeding or bottle feeding, leading to poor weight gain and potential failure to thrive as a baby. As they grow older, difficulties may persist, affecting tasks such as eating solid foods and speech development. Untreated lip or tongue-tie can also contribute to long-term issues like poor oral health, sleep apnea, and neck and shoulder pain in adulthood. Addressing these concerns early through treatment can significantly improve your child's quality of life and prevent potential complications later on.

Are There Diet Restrictions After a Frenectomy?

After a frenectomy, diet restrictions mainly apply to older babies, children, and adults. If anesthesia was used during the procedure, it's recommended to wait until it wears off before consuming solid foods. Additionally, for the first day or two post-procedure, it's best to avoid hot, cold, salty, acidic, or spicy foods as they may irritate the healing tissues under the tongue or upper lip. However, for infants who undergo the procedure, their diet of breastmilk or formula remains unchanged. Overall, following these guidelines can help promote proper healing and minimize discomfort during the recovery period.

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