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Are Lip & Tongue Ties More Common Today Than in the Past?

August 23, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — lehighvalley @ 4:21 pm
a child having their mouth examined by a lip and tongue tie specialist

Among infants, lip and tongue ties are becoming a more commonly diagnosed and recognizable problem that parents can now tell the early signs of. These issues date far back, being depicted in 17th century woodcuttings showing physicians performing frenectomies. Granted, today, the procedure looks a lot different. Read on to learn more about why this issue is being more frequently diagnosed and understand the history and treatment behind lip and tongue ties.

What are Lip & Tongue Ties?

Lip and tongue ties are separate issues that require the same treatment, called a frenectomy. While they affect different parts of the mouth, they can lead to similar issues whenever they aren’t treated. Frenula are the pieces of soft tissue within the mouth that connect the lips to the gums and the tongue to the floor of the mouth. Whenever these connective tissues are too thick or too long, it can limit your child or infant’s ability to nurse, as well as impact their digestion, speech, and ability to easily breathe.

Are They a More Common Issue Today?

Despite being more commonly known and referred to today, lip and tongue ties have a long history in the medical field and among parents. The primary difference between the mid-19th century and today is that more parents are nursing, and some of the most common signs of this issue are apparent while babies breastfeed. This difference in feeding is primarily because the bottle and nipple were accessible and a go-to feeding mechanism among this time.

Due to the rise in nursing as well as the internet and blogs connecting parents across the globe, more parents are aware of the signs of lip and tongue ties. Once they notice clicking noises while nursing, excessive drooling, digestion issues, difficulty gaining weight, and a wide range of additional impacts, most parents know that it’s time to schedule an appointment with a lip and tongue tie specialist or their pediatrician.

Why is it Important to Treat Lip & Tongue Ties?

In some cases, lip and tongue ties are so minor that they won’t have a big impact on your child’s life, so their pediatrician or children’s dentist may not recommend a frenectomy for them. However, in situations where their condition is impacting their health, development, and day-to-day life, a frenectomy will likely be needed. If timely treatment isn’t done, it could lead to a variety of issues in the future, including sleep impediments and breathing challenges.

If you’re concerned about your baby’s oral function, consider taking them into a lip and tongue tie specialist or their pediatrician for an examination. Not only can this provide you with peace-of-mind as a parent, but helping them get the care they need can positively impact their overall health.

About the Author

Dr. Garcia-DeMartino is not only a mother of four, but also a passionate lip and tongue tie specialist. She has decades of experience educating parents about their babies’ conditions as well as providing pain-less laser frenectomies. She keeps up-to-date with the latest advancements in her field and does everything possible to help her small patients thrive. To schedule an examination or book a frenectomy, visit her website or call 908-840-8399.

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