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Frenectomy: How Common Is Tongue Tie?

frenectomy | child and mother posing for picture | lexington smile studio

Frenectomy

Frenectomy | Tongue-tie is a medical condition inherited by some people who experience reduced tongue mobility as a result. If you look at yourself in the mirror and lift your tongue, you should see a fibrous tissue band (lingual frenulum) that connects the floor of your mouth to the bottom of your tongue.

Most people have a thin lingual frenulum found toward the bottom middle of the tongue. When it is positioned this way, it allows for a maximum range of tongue motion. For those with tongue-tie, however, their lingual frenulum may be thick, short or tight. The tip of their tongue may be connected to the floor of their mouth. This greatly restricting the movement of their tongue. 

For some people, having tongue-tie doesn’t lead to very many problems. They may find that they can go untreated into adulthood. For others, the condition of tongue-tie leads to difficulty into their adult life.

The prevalence of tongue-tie among infants is estimated to be between three and five percent, as well as for adults who go untreated, as the condition is inherited. 

Tongue-Tie Among Adults

If you have not treated your tongue-tie condition as an adult, you have probably adapted to the condition. You may not even know that you have it, if it is a minor case.

Moreover, doctors may advise parents to delay tongue-tie surgery for infants, as the condition tends to improve with time. However, if the condition is effecting the child’s weight and development, treatment should be considered.

Adults with tongue tie may have difficulty with:

  • Speaking
  • Eating and drinking
  • Breathing
  • Kissing

Also, you may have difficulty sticking your tongue out beyond your lower front teeth, as well as having a tongue appearance that appears heart-shaped or notched when you stick it out. Whereas, others find that they have difficulty lifting their tongue to reach their upper teeth.

How common is tongue-tie? 

As mentioned earlier, the estimated frequency of tongue-tie is between three to five percent. The exact percentage, both among infants and adults, is unknown because many people do not even know that they have it, or only have a very mild case.

Frenectomy Treatment

Although not everyone chooses to have tongue-tie treated, those with severe cases may benefit greatly from a frenectomy treatment. It takes a few minutes to perform in a doctor’s office.

Although the procedure is simple, the parent or caregiver must physically stretch the tissue band that has been lasered or cut, every day for a few weeks after the procedure. Moreover, this prevents it from re-tightening during recovery. Although the stretching procedure is straightforward, babies do not normally like it, which can make it difficult for parents.

Frenectomy Consultation

Contact Lexington Smile Studio to learn more. Our dental office offers CO2 laser frenectomy treatment for infants, children, and adults. New patients are welcome. Call now. We look forward to meeting you!

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