Many infants are diagnosed with tongue tie, which is a condition caused by a short or tight band of tissue that limits normal tongue movements. If your little one has been referred to a pediatric dentist to address this issue, you may have several questions about the process. Rest assured – a frenectomy is a very simple and minimally invasive procedure that will allow your child to grow and develop properly. For peace of mind, continue reading to learn what to expect from lip and tongue-tie treatment.
What is a Frenectomy?
A frenectomy is an oral procedure that treats lip or tongue ties. Your pediatric dentist will use a dental laser to loosen or remove the frenulum, helping free up your child’s lips or tongue so that they can eat and speak comfortably. If left untreated, it can lead to speech complications and other developmental issues.
Some common symptoms lip and tongue tie can produce include:
- Difficulty latching for breastfeeding
- Inability to stick tongue out
- Unable to touch the roof of the mouth with their tongue
- Difficulty moving the tongue around the mouth
- V-shaped notch at the tip of the tongue
The Lip and Tongue-Tie Treatment Process
If your child has an upcoming frenectomy, it’s normal to have some questions about the process. Here’s what to expect before, during, and after the procedure.
Preparing for a Frenectomy
Does your infant appear to be struggling with a lip or tongue tie? If so, the first thing you need to do is schedule a consultation with their pediatric dentist. During this appointment, they’ll conduct an oral examination to diagnose the condition and create a personalized treatment plan, which might include a frenectomy.
During a Frenectomy
Before starting the procedure, a topical numbing agent will be applied to the tissue to ensure your child’s comfort. However, this isn’t always necessary thanks to advancements in dentistry. Thanks to the dental laser, a scalpel is no longer necessary. Your child will have a much less invasive procedure with fewer risks of complications.
In addition, you can expect the entire process to take less than 30 minutes. A highly concentrated beam of light energy will cut the band of tissue to free the tongue. It will cauterize and sterilize the area, reducing the risk of bleeding and infections.
Recovering From a Frenectomy
Luckily, your baby will be able to nurse or feed immediately following the procedure. Any discomfort they experience should subside in just 24 to 48 hours. If needed, you can provide over-the-counter pain relievers that are suitable for their age to ensure they’re kept comfortable. Should any bleeding occur, you can apply gentle pressure to the area to control it. After about one to two weeks, their mouth will be completely healed!
About the Practice
At Brite Smiles 4 U, we go above and beyond for all of our patients. No matter the age, we will make sure you’re taken great care of when you visit our office. Using advanced technology, we guarantee a comfortable experience and stunning results for every smile. If you’d like to learn more about lip and tongue tie treatment, visit our website or call (215) 345-6500.