Does My Child Need a Frenectomy?

September 30, 2020 8:11 pm Published by
baby boy with blue eyes chewing on a blue plastic toy

A frenectomy is a procedure that removes connective tissue called the frenum. The connective tissue is in two different places in the mouth – the tissue connecting the tongue to the bottom of the mouth (called tongue-ties) and the tissue connecting the upper lips to the front teeth (called lip-ties).

When Do Children Need a Frenectomy?

Children need frenectomies for a variety of reasons. For babies, they may have problems with breastfeeding and possibly bottle-feeding as well. The connective tissue may be to blame if your infant can’t keep a good seal while feeding.

Older children may have eating or speech impairments. The lack of mobility from the tongue may also lead to your child positioning their jaw in a way that causes orthodontic issues in the future.

The connective tissue can also cause gaps between teeth. Most commonly, it will cause a gap in the front teeth. A dentist may recommend a frenectomy as part of an orthodontic treatment plan.

What Are the Signs That Children Might Need a Frenectomy?

If your infant has a difficult time with feeding, you may want to consider inadequate connective tissue being the issue. Some signs to look for include:

  • Prolonged breastfeeding
  • Difficulty latching
  • Poor weight gain
  • Excessive gassiness

Consulting with one of our dentists to see if this is the cause would be the first step in determining if your infant needs a frenectomy.

An older child with speech difficulties caused by tongue-ties will have symptoms like an inability to stick their tongue out past their upper gums. Gaps in the teeth may also be a sign of connective tissue not correctly sized. A dental examination will help determine if the causes of any of these issues are dental-related.

What Now?

Our dental office has the equipment and expertise to perform frenectomies. Your child is safe with us if your child needs a frenectomy. Please contact our office to learn more and schedule an appointment.

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