Your kids’ pediatric dentist knows that managing the dental needs of multiple children can be a challenge. They expect that you will schedule your children’s dental visits on the same day. In this way, you get to enjoy the convenience of having all your kids visit the same dental practice.The idea of getting all the kids’…
Ask a Dentist: What is Tongue Tie and Its Effects
Tongue tie is a condition that affects many at birth. Some see the issue improve on its own with little to no treatment, whereas others may require surgery to treat the condition. In this review, a biological dentist explains what tongue tie is, how it can affect a child’s development and when treatment is necessary.
An overview of tongue tie and potential risks
Tongue tie ranges in severity, and its effects are unique for every child. However, having a general understanding of what tongue tie is can be helpful when deciding if treatment might be necessary. The good news is there are effective and less invasive ways to deal with a tongue tie that does not improve.
Tongue tie in children explained
Tongue tie, also called ankyloglossia, is a condition that occurs at birth when the tip of the tongue is “tied” to the floor of the mouth. This can make it more challenging for the child in various ways, and many with the condition experience trouble speaking, eating and breastfeeding at an early age. Many grow out of tongue tie naturally, but it often requires the dentist to remove the tissue that ties the tongue through a minor surgical procedure.
Potential risks of tongue tie
The risks of tongue tie depend on the severity of the issue. A minor case of tongue tie may not pose much of a short-term risk as long as the issue resolves itself, but a more severe case of tongue tie may have potential consequences, including:
- Difficulty speaking
- Trouble with breastfeeding
- Increased risk of tooth decay
- Problems with eating
- Spacing issues may develop
If any of the concerns develop, it is important to visit the dentist promptly to determine if tongue tie treatment is necessary.
Tongue tie treatment options
Many instances of tongue tie improve without much intervention. If symptoms linger or worsen, however, tongue tie treatment is likely necessary. One of the most common types of tongue tie treatments is known as a frenectomy. This involves removing the connective tissue that ties the tip of the tongue to the floor of the mouth. Although the concept may seem simple, treatment does involve a minor surgical procedure. However, a minimally invasive dentist can use laser therapy as opposed to dental tools to perform a less discomforting and safer form of a frenectomy.
When to see a dentist for tongue tie
Any parent whose child has symptoms such as difficulty breastfeeding, eating or speaking due to the tongue should visit a dentist to find out more about tongue tie treatment. The dentist can explain all available treatment options and help parents make an informed decision about which option is best for their child.
Speak to a biological dentist about tongue tie
Contact our dental team today if you are interested in learning more about tongue tie treatment options. You can reach us by phone or email, and we will be glad to answer your questions and address your concerns.
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