Infants can be born with a tongue-tie or lip-tie that restricts their ability to nurse, swallow, breathe and chew. These two conditions deal with an infant’s tongue or lips being attached to the mouth with excessive connective tissue, making it difficult for the child to eat.
An infant frenectomy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that is done to remove one or both frena from the oral cavity. Infant frenectomy can be performed quickly and with minimal discomfort within the first few weeks after birth. This process is fairly quick and quite painless for the child.
It is important to have your baby evaluated for a possible tongue-tie or lip-tie. Even if the tongue or lip-tie is minimal and your baby can eat pretty well, future consequences of inaction can include an increased chance of cavities, improperly developed jaws, inability to eat solid foods, sleeping problems and headaches. It’s much better for your child to receive a frenectomy early on so as to avoid these problems and maintain proper oral health.
A dentist can spot tongue ties early. An infant frenectomy is safe within weeks following childbirth.
- Leaking milk during nursing
- Gagging, choking or vomiting
- Poor infant weight gain
- Long periods of nursing
Dental frenectomy procedures correct lip ties and tongue ties by focusing on two different frena in the mouth —the labial frenum, which is responsible for lip ties, and the lingual frenum, which is responsible for tongue ties.