If your child is struggling to eat or speak properly, a simple procedure may be just what they need to thrive. The My Kidz Dentist team will soon offer frenectomies — a procedure in which the connective tissue beneath the upper lip or underneath the tongue is removed — for their pediatric patients with speech problems, chewing difficulties, and orthodontic issues. Call My Kidz Dentist in Phoenix, Arizona, or book an appointment online today to learn more about frenectomies in children’s dentistry.
In dentistry, a frenectomy refers to the removal of the connective tissue underneath the tongue or on the gums beneath the upper lip. If this connective tissue, also called a frenulum, is too large or tight, it can impact a child’s ability to speak, chew, or latch on while breastfeeding.
There are two types of dental frenectomies that the My Kidz Dentist team may recommend for your child’s oral health:
A lingual frenectomy involves removing the tissue that connects the area underneath the tongue to the floor of the mouth. They are commonly used to correct a childhood condition called Ankyloglossia — also known as tongue-tie — in which the frenum is so short and thick that it limits the tongue’s range of motion. In addition to impacting speech development and a child’s ability to eat, Ankyloglossia often makes it difficult for babies to breastfeed properly.
During a maxillary frenectomy, the tissue that connects the front teeth to the upper gums is removed. This procedure is typically recommended when the frenulum is short, tight, and thick — a condition commonly referred to as a lip-tie. When a lip-tie occurs, infants struggle to curl and flare their lips, which leads to difficulties trying to latch while breastfeeding. If a lip-tie does not impact a baby’s development during infancy, it can begin to push their front teeth apart as they age.
Pediatric dentists often use special soft tissue lasers to essentially vaporize the tissue without causing complications. Laser therapy offers a number of benefits over traditional surgery. In addition to being quick and effective, laser therapy typically results in less blood and discomfort — perfect for infants, toddlers, and small children.
The recovery time for frenectomies is fast and usually comes with very few, if any, complications. Once your child’s mouth heals, their tongue or upper lip should feel more comfortable with an increased range of motion.
When it comes to dental procedures like frenectomies, it’s important to have a dental team that truly cares about your child’s comfort. Call My Kidz Dentist today or book an appointment online for more information.