Frenectomy

A frenum by definition is a small fold of tissue that secures or restricts the motion of a mobile organ in the body.

A maxillary lip-tie is a remnant of tissue (frenum) in the midline of the upper lip and the gum which holds the lip attached to the gum and may interfere with the normal mobility and function of the upper lip.

Removal of a maxillary frenum may be beneficial when one of the following occurs:

  • Feeding challenges such as: little to no weight gain, noisy eating/sucking, excessive gas and reflux symptoms along with painful or damaged nipples, losing suction and a baby who quickly tires while feeding.
  • Maternal factors with nursing such as: creased, flattened nipples after feeding, pain with latch and bleeding nipples, incomplete breast drainage, infected or plugged ducts, mastitis and nipple thrush.
  • Gingival recession
  • Compromised smile
  • Gap between front teeth
  • Oral hygiene challenges

A tongue-tie (ankyloglossia) is a condition in which the bottom of the tongue is anchored to the floor of the mouth by a thin membrane (frenum), which may restrict the mobility of the tongue. There are varying degrees of ankyloglossia.

Removal (frenectomy) of a lingual frenum may be beneficial when one of the following occurs:

  • Feeding challenges such as: little to no weight gain, noisy eating/sucking, excessive gas and reflux symptoms along with painful or damaged nipples, losing suction and a baby who quickly tires while feeding.
  • Maternal factors with nursing such as: creased, flattened nipples after feeding, pain with latch and bleeding nipples, incomplete breast drainage, infected or plugged ducts, mastitis and nipple thrush.
  • Breast feeding challenges
  • Speech challenges
  • Gingival recession

The “abnormal frenum” can present with none of the symptoms listed above. In that case, no treatment is indicated.

The timing of frenectomy procedures is very important. It is most commonly performed in young infants to facilitate feeding or in children once they are close to age 6 for issues other than feeding. Our doctors have received extensive training in diagnosing frenum issues and performing frenectomy procedures. They are certified in the use of soft tissue lasers.

Soft Tissue Laser

*Our office may request a referral from your Pediatrician, lactation consultant, speech pathologist, midwife or other health-care professional prior to performing an infant frenectomy.

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