What’s a Frenectomy, and Why you Might Need One

frenectomyRoyal Oak and Birmingham, MI

Ankyloglossia, often called a tongue tie or lip tie is a serious ailment that can impair breathing, eating, and speaking if left untreated. Problems tend to worsen the longer the issue remains untreated. Since a tongue tie won’t go away on its own over time, it’s crucial to speak with our Royal Oak laser dentist, Dr. Nancy Hartrick, at Hartrick Dentistry if you believe your kid has one. Today on the blog, we discuss the details of a frenectomy and why you might need one.

What’s a frenectomy?

Simply defined, a frenectomy is a procedure that releases the “lingual frenulum,” a band of tissue that binds the tongue to the floor of the mouth and restricts its mobility. A more common term used concerning the lingual frenulum is tongue tie. Our Royal Oak family dentist offers a simple laser procedure to free the tongue tie and regain complete range of motion. We use a precise dental laser that makes the procedure last a few seconds and can work for patients of any age, including newborns. You might also need to finish a myofunctional therapy program in addition to the tongue-tie release since it can improve your oral function, teach you new oral habits, or help you overcome past issues like correcting mouth breathing, closed-mouth posture, and proper swallowing patterns.

Why do I need a frenectomy?

Most of the body’s growth and development occurs in the adolescent years, and when you have a tongue tie, it can make it challenging to learn how to eat or speak properly. However, there are additional health risks that include developing sleep apnea, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, poor oral health, and malocclusion. Therefore, our Royal Oak dentist that treats tongue ties recommends addressing the situation as early as possible to prevent developmental issues that could cause future oral and overall health problems.

What are the benefits of a frenectomy?

For kids with tongue and lip ties, both lactation consultants and speech therapists frequently advise frenectomies. Frenectomies can be beneficial in helping tongue, and lip-tied youngsters establish healthy speech patterns, according to 60% of ENT physicians and 50% of speech-language pathologists (SLPS). This is because limited mobility of the lips and tongue can create articulation problems, notably with the letters  S, Th, N, L, R, D, and T. A child’s speech could sound “slushy” or slurred if they have a tongue tie or lip tie. A frenectomy can help with this problem by promoting normal tongue and lip mobility.

The advantages of frenectomies have also been mentioned by lactation and nursing professionals. Children’s correct latching, swallowing, and eating might be hampered by tongue and lip ties. Drooling, hindered jaw growth, and subpar oral motor development are all problems brought on by tongue ties interfering with the jaw and tongue motions necessary for effective feeding. Due to their inability to latch and nurse effectively, children with tongue and lip bindings will also take a lot longer to feed and show poor weight gain. Due to these factors, our Royal Oak dentist that offers frenectomies, frequently recommends the procedure for kids with moderate to severe tongue and lip ties.

Frenectomy in Royal Oak and Birmingham, Michigan

The real harm to oral health occurs during the early stages of an infant’s development. That’s why it’s crucial to address tongue ties during the adolescent years. Fortunately, even as an adult, if you still have a tongue tie, there is hope. Contact our Royal Oak dentist as soon as possible if you suspect you or your child has ankyloglossia. Dr. Nancy Hartrick would be happy to examine you or your child and make sure that any issues are promptly fixed using a less invasive laser approach. To find out if a tongue-tie release is the best option for you or your child, call Hartrick Dentistry at (248) 549-0950 or contact us online.

Posted in Tongue Tie