Stone Oak Pediatric Dentistry and Dominion Pediatric Dentistry offer state-of-the-art laser services to infants and children who have conditions commonly referred to as tongue-tie or lip tie in San Antonio and surrounding areas. Our pediatric dentist uses a CO2 soft tissue laser to provide precise, minimally invasive treatment to release the tongue or lip tie which can be done in our Stone Oak office. This common dental surgical procedure is known as laser frenectomy. There are many benefits of laser frenectomy which include the following: promotes healing and reduces post-procedural discomfort, minimizes bleeding, shorter procedure and healing time, reduced risk of infection, and is safe for newborns with immediate results.
Our pediatric dentists work together with your pediatrician, lactation consultant, oral myofunctional therapist, speech pathologist, and other health care providers to ensure that the frenectomy procedure is the best course of treatment for your baby/child. This “team approach” often helps rule out other problems that may be contributing to the difficulties your child may be experiencing as a result of tongue or lip tie. Our services include an exam and consultation visit, treatment visit and post-treatment visit with instructions and demonstration of recommended stretching/healing exercises to minimize the risk of reattachment.
A tongue tie is a condition present at birth that limits the range of motion of the tongue because the frenum (connective tissue) located under the tongue is too tight or fails to recede during normal development in the womb.
A lip tie is a condition where the frenum (connective tissue) located between the lips and the gums is short or connected too tightly to the gums or upper teeth. This can lead to food entrapment or plaque development and decay.
Tongue and/or lip tie conditions that may limit or restrict the range of motion of the tongue or lip can cause a multitude of difficulties for infants and children. In children, these conditions may result in speech disorders, problems with chewing and swallowing, sleep disordered breathing (apnea), severe bruxism and malocclusion. Lip and tongue ties cause difficulties related to dental hygiene resulting in tooth decay and gum problems. For example, self-cleaning becomes impossible without the full range of motion of the tongue due to a tongue tie.
Infants – In infants these conditions may result in the following difficulties: poor latch during nursing, poor weight gain, irritability during or after nursing, reflux or spitting up often, clicking or smacking noises while nursing, pulling away to gasp for air while nursing, dribbles milk while nursing, frequently fussy or has gas, and sleeping difficulties.
Children –In children these conditions may result in speech disorders, problems with chewing and swallowing, sleep disordered breathing (apnea), severe bruxism, malocclusion and difficulties related to dental hygiene resulting in tooth decay and gum problems.
Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy (OMT) helps the orofacial muscles (tongue, lips, cheeks, and surrounding musculatures) to work independently of each other by gaining strength to perform function without compensations. We have a Myofunctional Therapist available in office for your convenience. Myofunctional Therapy is necessary to prevent reattachment and help strengthen muscles before and after a tongue release procedure.