A tongue-tie can occur when an unusually short, tight or thick band of tissue tethers the bottom of the tongue to the floor of the mouth. It typically is a condition present at birth which can restrict the tongues range of motion and can often interfere with breastfeeding.
Often people with tongue-ties will have difficultly with the tongues range and find it difficult lifting and moving the tongue from side to side. They also have trouble sticking their tongue out past their lower front teeth. Tongue-ties can also affect speech, eating and swallowing. Consequently it can also have an affect on oral hygiene for older children and adults as brushing can be difficult and result in debris being left behind which can lead to tooth decay and gingivitis (inflammation of the gums).
Tongue-ties usually occur due to genetic factors where the lingual frenum does not separate before birth. It can be hereditary and is more common in boys than girls.
Tongue-ties can resolve themselves in early childhood when the frenum loosens however depending on the condition sometimes it can be corrected with a surgical procedure called a frenectomy. A frenectomy is a common dental procedure where the tight frenum is released by making an incision and is performed by our dental professionals at Word of Mouth Dentistry.