Does my child need a Frenectomy?  

what is a frenectomy child jersey city nj

A tongue-tie, or ‘ankyloglossia’, is a medical condition that is diagnosed in about 5% of babies. When the tissue attachment under the tongue (the labial frenum) is too short, tongue movement is significantly restricted and impairments with breastfeeding and speech can occur. Infants may also have a shortened labial frenum (connective tissue attachment between the upper lip and the gums above the front teeth) which can cause tooth decay and the formation of a gap between the two front teeth (diastema). To avoid these complications, your child’s dentist may recommend a frenectomy. A frenectomy is a quick and easy in-office procedure that releases the tongue or lip tie to allow normal function. Sometimes a frenum is present but there is no functional issue, then the procedure is not indicated.

Indications for a frenectomy Your child may need a frenectomy if they have any of the following problems:

  1. Problems with breastfeeding/feeding: a tongue-tie makes it difficult for infants to swallow because mobility is significantly restricted, and it can also cause breastfeeding to be painful. Older children may be pickier eaters or have longer meal times requiring lots of liquids to help them swallow.
  1. Speech problems: the tongue and lip are crucial for articulation. In cases where their movement is restricted, children will have problems pronouncing certain sounds, and speech impediments such as lisps are common.
  1. Sleep issues: a tight labial frenum could be preventing your child’s lips from meeting at rest and could cause them to sleep with their mouth open, predisposing them to dental problems such as an anterior open bite. Sleep apnea may also occur because the improper muscular tone of the tongue can cause it to sit in a more posterior position and restrict the airway. Where there is sleep-disordered breathing, complications such as snoring and teeth grinding may result.
  1. Dental problems: the presence of a lip or tongue-tie causes there to be an increased risk of cavities on the front surface of incisors.  Additionally, cavities on the chewing surface of molars are more likely as the tongue is unable to remove food from these sites.

How is a frenectomy performed?

Frenectomies are simple procedures that can be performed right in your pediatric dentist’s office, in about 15 minutes. Thanks to advances in dentistry, most frenectomies are performed using specialized soft tissue lasers. These lasers emit a highly focused beam that vaporizes oral tissue. Laser treatment generally causes very little bleeding and minimal discomfort, and the healing process is usually quick and uncomplicated, making it an ideal solution for babies and young children. So, if you have a fussy feeder, or are concerned about problems with your little one’s speech or sleep habits, talk to the team at True Dental Care about a frenectomy today! 

True Dental Care