Tongue-Tie

Tongue-tie is a condition characterized by a thick or tight band of tissue (lingual frenulum) that anchors the bottom of the tongue’s tip to the floor of the mouth. This condition is usually noticeable from birth, and infants with tongue-tie might have difficulty sticking out their tongue. This condition can also affect the way a child eats, speaks, and swallows, as well as interfere with breastfeeding. Pediatric dentists like our own Dr. Patterson have special training that makes infants and children feel at ease during a consultation and the necessary corrective treatment.

Sometimes tongue-tie may not cause problems. Some cases may require a simple surgical procedure for correction.

The consequences of an untreated tongue-tie can be many and varied, depending largely on the patient’s age and the severity of the condition. As the patient grows older, the corrective treatment becomes more demanding. Delay in treatment, therefore, can have negative consequences.

The American Association of Pediatric Dentists (AAPD) recommends a child visit specialized dental health professionals by age 1 to spot any challenges to their dental health and overall care.

Lip ties are a similar problem and restrict the movement of the upper lip. This restriction can impede the upper lip from folding out, preventing a proper latch.

Pediatric Dentist in Aurora

For Infants

At this age, your child may present problems breastfeeding. This will undoubtedly create additional challenges for the child and parents.

For the baby, these may include:

  • Impact on milk supply
  • Termination of breastfeeding
  • The baby failing to thrive
  • Poor bonding between baby and mother
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Problems with introducing solids

The maternal experience of breastfeeding a tongue-tied baby may include:

  • Pain
  • Nipple damage, bleeding, blanching, or distortion of the nipples
  • Mastitis, nipple thrush, or blocked ducts
  • Severe pain with latch or losing latch
  • Sleep deprivation results from the baby being unsettled
  • Depression or a sense of failure
Pediatric Dentist in Aurora

For Children

Children with a tongue tie have to contend with difficulties that may become apparent as they grow older.

These can include:

  • Inability to chew age-appropriate solid foods
  • Gagging, choking, or vomiting foods
  • Persisting food fads
  • Difficulties related to dental hygiene
  • Persistence of dribbling
  • Delayed development of speech
  • Deterioration in speech
  • Behavior problems
  • Dental problems starting to appear
  • Loss of self-confidence because they feel and sound “different.”
  • Strong, incorrect habits of compensation.
Pediatric Dentist in Aurora

Treatment

At Epic Dentistry for Kids, we use a state-of-the-art diode laser to release these connections. Laser treatment provides many advantages over surgical treatment. Unlike a blade, laser treatment can reduce the chances of bleeding. Such a technique allows us to treat your kid without a sharp object near delicate tissues and reduces the risks of infection due to the antibacterial effect of the laser. Likewise, the child will experience reduced healing times and scarring.

There are only a few nerve endings in the area, so the child is never at risk of feeling too much pain. Granted, each case will vary. Please note that such a procedure is not the sole privilege of pediatric dentists, but we have specialized training to make children as comfortable as possible during the treatment.

Correction only takes a matter of minutes, and parents are always welcome in the treatment room during treatment. If your child has swallowing or speech difficulties, we may recommend evaluation with a qualified speech or myofunctional therapist prior to treatment. In the end, it’s not just about what we do at the dentist’s office, but the teamwork we plan. We’ve treated patients all over Aurora and Denver.

Afterward, you may notice a small white patch under the child’s tongue, but this will heal in a couple of days. That will not bother your kid.

Some follow-up is necessary. You may have to perform some stretches for a couple of weeks to prevent the tissue from regrowing too tightly, but our team will carefully explain how to do this and avoid as much discomfort as possible.

Lip-Tie

Unfortunately, this condition hasn’t enjoyed the same wealth of research as tongue-tie has; still, both are similar and result from the same unusual conditions in your child’s membrane developments. When your kid’s upper lip frenulum develops into a thicker and stiffer variation than their peers, it can cause range and lp mobility complications.

Lip ties are nowhere near as common as tongue-ties. You should also notice that they can be co-occurring conditions, so if you bring your child for either of them, we’ll also evaluate for the other.

Note that severe lip-ties can result in difficulty eating from spoons and other utensils, and some fellow pediatric dentists believe it may increase the likelihood of tooth decay in toddlers. However, there’s no clear correlation yet.

Depending on your child’s condition (lip-ties can be categorized at any of four levels), your kid’s pediatrician may recommend you leave it alone or that someone performs a “frenectomy.” Just as with a tongue-tie, we can use lasers to sever the membrane holding back your kid’s lip neatly.

Your child won’t feel much pain, if any, and may generally forgo the need of anesthesia.

FAQ

What is a tongue-tie correction?

Tongue-tie correction in Aurora is a procedure that is done to surgically cut the tongue to release the frenulum in the mouth. This procedure is most common in children who have ankyloglossia as a condition. It is easy to see the condition in a child’s mouth.

Does tongue-tie need to be corrected?

Tongue-tie correction in Aurora is needed for children. Tongue-tie in children is when the tongue is unable to move well. In some cases, a tongue-tie issue can try to resolve itself in a few years. If not, the tongue must be surgically cut so that your child can have full functionality of their tongue.

What is the procedure for tongue-tie correction?

Tongue-tie treatment in Aurora is a relatively simple procedure for our oral surgeons. The correction is done by cutting tissue that is underneath the tongue. Cutting this area allows for better movement and useability of the tongue. If you have any further questions, please reach out to us.

Is tongue-tie correction treatment painful?

Tongue-tie correction treatment in Aurora is not painful. The area under the tongue that needs to be cut to allow better movement is a thin piece of skin. The cut itself may briefly cause slight pain, but the entire procedure can be done within fifteen seconds.

At what age can tongue-tie be corrected?

Tongue-tie treatment in Aurora can be corrected on a newborn. If a baby is unable to properly breastfeed or drink from a bottle because of their tongue, then the correction is needed. Once the correction is made, a newborn can get back to feeding in no time.