HAVE YOU EVER HEARD of a person being “tongue-tied” or “lip-tied”? As dental professionals, we care about the health of your mouth as a whole, not just your teeth. When a tongue- or lip-tie is present, some problems may arise.
Why Do Lip And Tongue-Ties Occur?
A lip or tongue-tie occurs developmentally the same as some people having attached or unattached earlobes. There are two kinds of frenums in the mouth, labial (lip) frenum and the lingual (tongue) frenum. The labial frenum can be found in the center of the lips, connecting the inside of your upper and lower lips to the gum tissue. You can see the tongue frenum by looking in the mirror and lifting your tongue up to touch the roof of your mouth.
The frenum connects muscles to the bone and allows for functional of the tongue and lips. When the frenum tissue is short and restrictive, however, it has the potential to do more harm than good.
What Problems Can Arise As The Result Of A Tongue-Tie?
A tongue-tie restricts the tongue and prevents it from moving freely. Tongue-ties may be moderate, resulting in only small inconveniences like not being able to lick an ice cream cone. In some cases, however, they cause severe impairments such as:
• Difficulty nursing as an infant and eating later in life
• Speech impediments
• Pain and discomfort
• Periodontal issues, such as receding gums
• Tongue thrust and bite misalignment
What Issues Can A Lip-Tie Cause?
A lip-tie refers to a frenum that attaches too far down on the gum. The possible complications of a lip-tie are somewhat similar to those who are tongue-tied. An short labial frenum can:
• Cause pain and discomfort
• Make it difficult for children to keep their teeth clean
• Complicate nursing
• Lead to periodontal issues, such as receding gums
• Result in misaligned teeth and bite (usually gap teeth)
A Frenectomy Helps Alleviate Tongue- and Lip-Ties
A frenectomy is a simple procedure that can be performed by dental professionals typically easily within just a few minutes utilizing a laser. Before performing a frenectomy, several factors are taken into account, including the possibility that the condition may correct itself over time.
We’re Here To Answer Your Questions
If you’re concerned about a possible lip-tie or tongue-tie in yourself or your child, schedule an examination with your dental professional. We at Aesthetic Dental Designs® would be more than happy to answer questions.