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What To Know About a Tongue-tie Procedure

Is your child dealing with tongue-tie? 

Tongue-tie, also referred to as ankyloglossia, occurs when the skin (the frenulum) that connects the tongue to the bottom of the mouth is so short that it restricts the movement of your child’s tongue. Tongue-tie can impact your child’s speech or ability to chew or breastfeed properly, which is why you should talk with our Casa Grande, AZ, pediatricians Dr. Bayo Atolagbe and Dr. George Onyia about whether your child could benefit from a tongue tie procedure.

How common is tongue-tie? 

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, up to 10 percent of children have tongue-tie. The problem is that it can impact everything from tongue movement to latching during breastfeeding. If this is the case, this is easily something that our Casa Grande, AZ, pediatricians can detect early on in your child’s life to determine whether your child could benefit from a tongue tie procedure.

What is involved in a tongue tie procedure? 

This procedure is safe and minimally invasive. Many techniques are used for a tongue-tie procedure and our Casa Grande, AZ, pediatric team will determine which type of surgery is best for your newborn or child. Since there are not many nerves or blood vessels in the frenulum, this procedure is not considered painful.

Traditional techniques (referred to as a frenotomy) will use a scalpel to release the frenulum, while more advanced options such as laser technology and electrocautery surgery can also be used to improve the tongue’s movement. The procedure itself only takes a couple of minutes and children can even breastfeed immediately after.

What is the recovery process like? 

A lot will depend on the type of tongue-tie procedure your child has had performed here in Casa Grande, AZ. For example, infants and children will need to perform certain tongue exercises every day for weeks after the surgery to prevent the tissue from growing back the same way, causing the same restrictions. Electrocautery can clot the blood and prevent bleeding and other issues after the procedure.

The good news is that results are immediate, making it easier for most infants to breastfeed right away; however, not all infants with ankyloglossia will need to undergo a tongue-tie procedure. Other nonsurgical options could work. This is why it’s important to speak with our pediatricians to determine if tongue-tie surgery is right for your child.

Have questions about our tongue tie procedure? If so, the Casa Grande, AZ, pediatricians here at Starlight Pediatric Primary and Urgent Care would be happy to sit down with you to answer any questions you have. Call us at (520) 510-0087 to schedule an appointment.

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