What symptoms are associated with tongue-tie?
Symptoms vary but may include the following:
- A tongue that appears to have a heart shape or notch
- In infants, breastfeeding sessions are lengthy, latching is often difficult, and babies often struggle to gain weight
- In children, speech impairments and restless sleep are common, as are difficulties when licking ice cream, sticking the tongue out, and moving it freely around the mouth
- In adults, speech issues are common, as is clicking and pain in the jaws, migraine headaches, lower jaw protrusion, poor sleeping habits, and lacking dental health.
How is the condition diagnosed?
Most often, a patient’s primary doctor, pediatrician, or lactation consultant will diagnose the issue. It’s common that a dental expert will diagnose tongue-tie in older children and adults.
How is it treated?
While not every instance of this condition will require treatment – many infants and children have tongue-tie that does not interfere with their swallowing or speaking – in cases where intervention is necessary, we use advanced laser technology to gently remove the restriction.
The procedure is very quick, precise, and though sedation and/or anesthesia is not necessary, it’s available for patients who’d prefer to utilize it. Following treatment, babies are immediately returned to mom to nurse in most cases, while kids and adults recover quickly at home and under supervision. Patients will need to stretch/have their lips and tongue stretched to ensure the frenulum doesn’t reattach, and our dentist will advise you on how to perform these gentle exercises.
Do you suspect you or your child may be experiencing this condition? Call Watertown Dental Care today and we’d be happy to conduct a thorough exam!