Tongue Tie

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Tongue Tie services offered in Issaquah, WA

The tongue is an important accessory for the daily function of the mouth, including eating and speaking. Issaquah Dental Care supports those suffering from tongue tie at their office in Issaquah, Washington. You may benefit from an office visit if  you suspect your child possesses tongue tie. To learn more about tongue tie, call Issaquah Dental Care or schedule an appointment using the online reservation system. 

Tongue Tie Q & A

What is tongue tie?

Clinically referred to as ankyloglossia, tongue tie is a condition where the tongue never detaches from the base of the mouth during its development. This is caused by a shortened or thickened lingual frenulum, the tissue responsible for tongue motor control. Prevalence estimates of tongue tie sit at around 10%.

While tongue tie rarely causes the loss of speech, it can impede your speech and prevent children from breastfeeding. It’s important growing children receive essential nutrients, and breastfeeding offers additional immune support for a child. 

What causes tongue tie?

Unfortunately, the pathophysiology of tongue tie isn’t well-understood. Studies currently in development aim to improve the knowledge of this condition. Some evidence suggests genetics as a contributing factor in the development of tongue tie. 

How do you identify symptoms of tongue tie?

If you suspect you or a child suffers from tongue tie, it’s best to schedule an appointment with Issaquah Dental Care for diagnostic confirmation. Common symptoms of tongue tie to look out for include:

  • Difficulty during latching and breastfeeding
  • Prolonged breastfeeding
  • A constantly hungry baby
  • A clicking sound during breastfeeding
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Presence of a speech impediment
  • Issues with tongue mobility

In many cases, no symptoms manifest because of tongue tie and often go unnoticed. 

How is tongue tie diagnosed?

Depending on the manifestation of symptoms, a tongue tie diagnosis falls into one of four categories. Identifying how and where the frenulum attaches to the mouth allows for a personalized approach to treatment. 

What are available treatments for tongue tie? 

Treatment options are limited because tongue tie is not yet fully understood. Your dental provider may recommend surgery in severe cases like a child suffering malnourishment. Known as a frenectomy, the surgeon cuts the tissue connecting the tongue to the mouth in an attempt to elongate it.

Patients receiving frenectomies typically experience minimal discomfort. Pain medications and general anesthesia provide relief before surgery. Risks associated with a frenectomy include bleeding, scarring, and in rare cases, damage to saliva ducts.

Some cases of tongue tie instead call for frenuloplasty. A frenuloplasty is a corrective procedure using plastic surgery methods to improve quality of life.

To learn more about tongue tie, consider calling the Issaquah, Washington office to schedule an appointment. You can also book online through the website’s reservation system.