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What is a Tongue Tie? – Levittown, PA

When Eating and Speaking Prove Difficult

Is your little one struggling to latch while breastfeeding? Do they have difficulty sticking out their tongue? If so, you may be wondering what could be causing this to happen. The truth is that they may have a tongue tie, but do not worry, it can be easily treated. At Happy Teeth of Levittown, Dr. Amar Singh and his team can work with you and your child to establish the problems caused by the tongue tie and formulate a plan to release the banded tissue and improve their oral function. If you believe your child may be suffering from a tongue tie and want to learn more about how it can be treated, contact our office today to schedule an appointment.

A mother, father, and baby smiling after having their little one’s tongue tie in Levittown revised

What is a Tongue Tie?

A baby lying on its back on a bed and playing with its toes

A tongue tie is a common problem that develops during fetal development. The band of tissue that connects to the floor of the mouth and is located beneath the tongue can become thick and restricted, resulting in what is referred to as a “tongue tie.” The band of tissue is known as the “frenum” or “frenulum.” If it causes your little one to have difficulty moving their tongue up and down or side to side or creates a troubling experience while breastfeeding, you’ll want to consider talking to Dr. Singh about treatment for a tongue tie.

After all, it is important to address this problem early on and avoid more serious complications as they grow older.

What Problems Can Develop?

A baby smiling and showing its tongue

It is not uncommon for your little one to develop certain problems or issues when dealing with a tongue tie. Some of the most common signs include:

  • Difficulty latching while breastfeeding
  • Poor weight gain
  • Prolonged or frequent feedings
  • Difficulty introducing solid foods
  • Excessive fussiness
  • Difficulty moving the tongue in all directions
  • Difficulty swallowing, sleeping, or speaking
  • Increased problems with your child’s digestive system as they get older

How a Tongue Tie is Treated

A mother playing with her baby on the floor

You’ll be pleased to learn that as part of good infant oral care, the team at Happy Teeth of Levittown offers a valuable solution when it comes to addressing a tongue tie. By performing a frenectomy, your child can experience improved oral function that allows for easier breastfeeding, bottle feeding, speaking, and swallowing.

The process is simple and easy to perform, taking only a few minutes to complete. Dr. Singh will use a Light Scalpel CO2 dental laser to release the restricted frenulum gently and carefully. If necessary, a topical anesthetic can be applied, and sedation dentistry delivered depending upon the age of the child.

This process is virtually painless and will leave your little one with greater oral function once Dr. Singh is finished. Also, you will receive detailed instructions regarding appropriate aftercare to ensure the released tissue does not try to reattach. Do not be surprised to see a diamond shape form beneath the tongue. This is completely normal and necessary for proper healing. You will be expected to perform stretches to your child’s tongue that may result in minor bleeding.