The Basics of a Frenectomy

Posted on 7/20/2018 by Jeremy Burke
The Basics of a FrenectomyYou recently took your child to the dentist, and he recommended you consider a frenectomy. Subjecting your child to a surgery might sound scary, but by better understanding the procedure, you may feel more at ease.

What Exactly is a Frenectomy?

A frenectomy involves removing the frenum of the mouth. There are two of these muscular attachments in the mouth, and at times, they can obstruct normal function. They include:

•  Lingual frenum - Connects from the bottom of the tongue to the floor of the mouth
•  Maxillary labial frenum - Connects the inner portion of the upper lip to the gums above the front teeth

Lingual frenectomies are quite common among young children. This simple procedure involves numbing the tongue before a small incision is made to release the tongue from the floor of the child's mouth. Then, the incision is stitched to give the tissue an opportunity to heal.

What Are the Benefits of a Frenectomy?

Both types of frenectomies offer benefits. The labial frenectomy can reduce pain and discomfort, and it can work to eliminate tooth gaps found between the two front teeth. It can also improve bite function.
Lingual frenectomies offer a wealth of benefits to young children.

This is especially true when it comes to speech function. A lingual frenectomy is a common procedure for children who tend to become “tongue-tied.” Also known as ankyloglossia, this anomaly is thought to decrease mobility of the tongue tip, and left untreated, a child may go through several years of speech therapy without any improvement.

If you are concerned that your child might need a frenectomy – or if another dentist has recommended the procedure and you simply need another opinion – please give our office a call. We have experience helping parents to better understand the pros and cons of this procedure. We want you to feel comfortable with your decision.
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