The mobility of an infant’s tongue and lip is essential for successful breast feeding, both for the mother and her baby. Some babies may not be able to properly latch onto the mother’s breast due to either a tied tongue or tied lip.
What is a tongue tie?
A tongue tie occurs when the movement of the tongue is restricted by the thin membrane under the baby’s tongue (the lingual frenulum). All babies are born with some of this tissue, but for some infants it is so tight that it restricts the free movement of their tongue. Babies with a tongue tie often have difficulties nursing as it interferes with their ability to latch onto the breast. Studies have shown that this defect is hereditary, and it affect about 5% of newborns babies.
What is a lip tie?
A lip tie occurs when the thin membrane on the upper lip (the labial membrane) is abnormally tight or too stiff. Many babies with a tongue tie, also have a lip tie. Babies with a lip tie often have difficulty creating a proper seal on the breast, causing them to take in excess air during breastfeeding.
Signs and Symptoms of Tied Tongue and Lip
- Your baby may be experiencing popping on and off the breast, leaking out the sides of the mouth,
- poor weight gain, gagging, reflux or colic symptoms.
- For the mother, you may be experiencing painful nursing, prolonged feedings, poor breast drainage and decreased milk production.
- Please note that these signs and symptoms may be a result of other problems and not solely related to ties.
An infant’s inability to achieve proper latch on during breastfeeding may result in a mother giving up on breastfeeding altogether. If you have been told that your baby is tongue or lip tied, consider one simple way to correct this problem.
With the Solea Laser, tongue and lip ties can be released in a simple harmless pain-free procedure called a frenectomy. This tie revision removes tissue or releases the tight frenulum under the tongue or upper lip. Our state-of-the-art laser allows for a safe and quick procedure that provides greater tongue and lip mobility. With usually no bleeding and no anesthesia, your baby can breast feed as soon as the
procedure is done. In some instances, this procedure can aid in the prevention of future tooth spacing problems and speech difficulties.
As a team, we want to provide you and your baby with compassionate and comprehensive support through this process. Please contact our friendly team today if you have questions or would like toschedule a visit for an evaluation with Brent J. Porter D.D.S., Santa Cruz Pediatric Dentist at (831) 459- 9802. We look forward to hearing from you!