A frenectomy is the removal of the frenum. The frenum is a very thin piece of connective tissue in the mouth that can cause complications in babies and children. If are noticing your child has been having a hard time breastfeeding, eating, or talking, a frenectomy may help resolve the issue. A frenectomy can help relieve a child or baby from the discomfort associated with tongue or lip-ties.
TYPES OF FRENA IN THE MOUTH
- The Lingual frenum connects the tongue to the bottom of the mouth. Some children have a lingual frenum that is attached all the way to the tip of the tongue. Any time the frenum restricts the tongue’s movement the child is said to be “tongue-tied” and this often leads to issues with breast-feeding, eating, and talking.
- The Labial frenum attaches the upper lip to the gums above the top two front teeth. If this thin piece of tissue runs too far down along the lip and gums, movement of the upper lip can be very limited. This can cause a child to be “lip-tied” and could create problems breast-feeding, eating, talking, and cleaning the teeth.
SYMPTOMS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN INFANTS
- Ineffective or unsustained latches
- Prolonged feeding times
- Poor weight gain/failure to thrive
- Upper lip blisters, doesn’t curl out, or flange around nipple
SYMPTOMS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN MOMS
- Infected nipple/mastitis
- Recurrent plugged ducts
- Pain with latching
- Incomplete breast drainage
- Continued pain during nursing
- Nipple trauma: cracked, bruised, bleeding, blistered, creased, blanched, or flattened nipples