Published on May 3, 2016, Updated on November 27, 2021
Laser dentistry tongue-tie and lip-tie correction is quickly becoming the treatment method of choice for infants with restricted tongue movement. Nursing plays an important role in early oral development — something Dr. Nam understands as a mother herself and through her advanced pediatric dental training, however, about 10% of babies are born with tongue tie or lip tie (sometimes both), which hinders an infant’s nursing ability. Laser dentistry can help offer you a precise, painless, quick and minimally invasive option!
What Does Tongue-Tied or Lip-Tied Mean?
Tongue-tied or lip-tied means that an infant’s tongue and lips are attached to the mouth with excessive connective tissue webbing. This excess tissue impedes the movement of the tongue or lips to various degrees causing moderate to severe effects. Severe tongue and lip ties affect more than just breastfeeding. Even if a baby can breastfeed well, and without causing the mother to feel pain, restrictive frenulums can affect jaw and dental development, breathing, chewing, swallowing and digestion. Tongue and/or lip ties are also associated with reflux, which can cause significant pain for the infant. When this restricted mobility interferes with nursing, bottle feeding, or causes discomfort to mother or child, a laser frenectomy (removal of the frenulum) may be recommended. “Even if a baby can breastfeed well, and without causing the mother to feel pain, restrictive frenulums can affect jaw and dental development, speech, eating/swallowing )gagging or choking), inability or difficulty in eating solid foods, dental caries (cavities), spacing of the teeth, need for braces, breathing or sleeping problems, posture, TMD, reflux, headaches and more.
Using a laser – Lightscalpel, Dr. Nam can release a tongue or lip tie in a minimally invasive procedure that takes less than a minute. In most cases, only a topical numbing anesthetic is needed to safeguard your baby from any discomfort. Laser dentistry and treatment means that the tongue or lip tie can be repaired with little to no bleeding and minimal discomfort following treatment. Your infant will be able to breastfeed immediately after the tie has been released.
Advantages of Dental Laser Tissue Treatment?
Laser tissue treatment for tongue or lip tie offers the following benefits over surgical options:
- Reduced pain. In some instances, eliminating the need for anesthesia. (The laser seals nerve endings.)
- Minimal bleeding and swelling. During soft tissue treatments, the laser seals blood vessels encouraging immediate blood clotting.
- No need for stitches. Because the area has been cauterized, stitches may be completely unnecessary for some patients.
- Reduced infection risk. The laser sterilizes the area immediately during treatment.
- Increased precision. Lasers allow the dentist to limit the trauma to the treated area, which spares the surrounding tissue from inadvertent damage.
- Faster healing and regeneration. This occurs as a result of decreased bleeding, trauma, and risk of infection.
more on Frenectomy Cost
About Dr. Nam’s Personal and Professional Experience with Frenectomy
- Dr. Nam has been practicing Pediatric Dentistry since 2014 and took a specialized interest in treating infants with Tethered Oral Tissues, or Lip/ Tongue ties since 2016. She is laser certified by the Academy of Laser Dentistry (ALD) and is a member of the International Affiliation of Tongue Tie Professionals (IATP).
- “I know first hand how difficult those first few weeks of life can be when both mom and baby are trying to figure out how breastfeeding works. After going through the struggles of breastfeeding with my two boys, I learned that they both had tongue ties, and discovered how much it can impact the latch and experience of nursing. After releasing their ties, there was a dramatic difference in efficiency of nursing. The latch was much stronger, there was no more pain, no more drooling of milk and a happier baby. I was able to successfully nurse both my boys for over a year. “
- We use the state-of the art LightScalpel CO2 soft tissue laser for our releases. This “cold laser” has many benefits over a diode laser or a scissor “snip”, including
- Quicker treatment time of around 15- 30 seconds
- Less postoperative discomfort
- Faster Healing time
- Less scarring
- Less Bleeding, less swelling
- Dr. Nam is committed to educating and helping other moms who may be having trouble with breastfeeding. We work with local International Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLC’s), Myofunctional Therapists and OT’s for the support that is needed in this multidisciplinary approach to treatment.
Call for a Tongue-Tie and Lip-Tie Correction Evaluation
If you want to know more about the advantages of dental laser treatment for tongue and lip-tie treatment call our Erie office today.