The Simple Procedure You Don’t Need to Fear
A frenectomy/frenotomy is a simple procedure to remove thick or tight tissue that is impeding either your lip or tongue from proper movement or function. Typically, the area is numbed, your dentist uses a laser that allows us to perform the procedure with minimal discomfort for the patient, minimal to no bleeding and no use of sutures in most cases. Young children may be administered nitrous oxide to help them relax.
After a frenectomy/frenotomy, the treatment area may be uncomfortable for a few days. This is normal. You will be instructed how to properly exercise the area in order to prevent the tissue from re-adhering during the healing process. Healing is fairly rapid. The site should be completely healed within 2-3 weeks.
TYPES OF FRENECTOMY/FRENOTOMY
The Lingual Frenectomy/Frenotomy is useful in three major circumstances. In infancy a tongue tie may cause difficulty nursing for the baby or for mom. This is typically diagnosed and referred by a pediatrician or lactation consultant.
A tongue tie may interfere with proper speech development in the young child. This may be noticed by a parent, teacher or pediatrician.
Finally, a tongue tie may prevent the tongue from properly situating at the roof of the mouth during rest. This can lead to mouth breathing, a higher incidence of sleep disordered breathing and sleep apnea, difficulty achieving restful sleep, frequent congestion and sinus or ear nose and throat issues. This will also typically lead to a narrow upper jaw and difficulty with proper teeth alignment.
The Maxillary Labial Frenectomy/Frenotomy is useful when the fold of tissue that connects the upper lip to the ridge of bone that houses the upper teeth connects a bit to low and inserts in-between the two front teeth.
This piece of tissue can prevent the two front teeth from being able to be brought together either naturally or during orthodontics. In some cases it can be beneficial to remove this tissue prior to the braces years.