1)Can a tongue tied baby/child or adult stick their tongue out past his/her lips?

Absolutely yes! The tongue needs to have a normal motion in ALL directions. The most important movement for the tongue during breastfeeding is UP and DOWN not OUT.

2)How often does a tongue tie accompany a lip tie?

In my experience, >70% of cases a tongue tie accompanies a lip tie. Only after a functional assessment, we decide whether the tongue or lip tie needs to be released.

3)If a tongue-tie is left untreated, can it have an effect in childhood and adulthood?

Untreated tongue ties in infants can lead to difficulty chewing and swallowing firmer foods, altered jaw and dental development including a high palate and narrow facial structure, poor sleep patterns, mouth breathing, and increased gas and bloating resulting from poor tongue coordination and corresponding swallowing of air. Also, when tongue movement is restricted, the tongue cannot sweep across tooth surfaces and spread saliva, both crucial to oral cleansing and may increase the risk to cavities. Tongue ties in childhood present itself as affecting jaw growth, speech, picky eating, thumb sucking, clenching, mouthbreathing, snoring or disturbed sleep. In adults it progresses to affect the TMJ, breathing, sleep(mouthbreathing, snoring, UARS, Sleep apnea), anxiety, posture and a quality of life.

4)Can a tongue tie cause speech problems?

Significant ties may result in delayed speech development due to the tongue being restricted in movement. There are articulation problems with letters like R, S, L, Z, D, CH, TH, and SH in some kids. While some kids can make these sounds in isolation, stringing the sounds together during speech can be very difficult.

5)Are tongue tie stretches/exercises necessary to prevent reattachment?

Stretches are most the important and necessary post operative care measure to prevent reattachment for the lip and a released tongue tie. The opposing raw edges of the wound are too close, and will stick together to some degree without stretching.

6)Is there always a posterior tie behind an anterior?

Yes. The real restriction of a tongue tie is typically at the fascia which is present posterior to the anterior component.

7)Is there a tongue tie release provider/ dentist near you?

Dr. Ankita is the only Indian Ambassador to be trained by Dr. Soroush Zaghi of The Breathe Institute. In our practice we use the Functional Frenuloplasty procedure to release tongue ties for toddlers, children and adults. Dr. Ankita Shah is also Laser Certified by the Global Laser Oral Health, LLC to perform laser frenectomies for infants and babies. We work as a team and believe in a holistic, conservative and overall approach. Sometimes there may be reasons other than a tongue/lip tie which may be giving you similar symptoms. We like to give a holistic approach and give you a pleasant journey through your treatment.

8)Can a baby outgrow a tongue tie? Will the tongue tie disappear with age?

A tongue tie can bever disappear on its own. The Tongue tie is fascia that is enveloping the muscles beneath the tongue. Some Tongue ties show symptoms and some do not. Only the symptomatic tongue ties need attention. A tongue tie cannot be corrected without a small surgical intervention.

9)I have no difficulties with breastfeeding but it looks like my baby has a lip/ tongue tie. What should I do?

Enjoy your normal breastfeeding journey 🙂

10)Does a tongue tie need to be fixed?

Untreated tongue ties often show some signs and symptoms at different ages. Upon diagnosing the existence of a tongue tie, having a lingual frenectomy/ functional frenuloplasty/ tongue tie release performed can yield fantastic results. The earlier it is released the better. Better late than never!

11)Can tongue ties be corrected in adults?

Tongue-tie in adults may be found when looking for causes of a TMD/orofacial pain, clenching of teeth, snoring, disturbed sleep and breathing and poorly developed jaw growth and teeth alignment. There are also several related issues stem from a tongue restriction that include the airway, posture, and sleep, which is why a comprehensive functional assessment of the tongue is essential. A functional frenuloplasty is a straightforward outpatient procedure that can be completed in office without the need for general anesthesia. It is a quick, safe, non-invasive and relatively a painless procedure.

12)Can tongue tie cause sleep problems?

In some cases the tongue rests low in the mouth because of a tongue tie, low muscle tone, mouth breathing, or inadequate space in the mouth. This can cause the posterior part of the tongue to fall back and narrow the airway causing Airway function disorder. Airway function disorder involves Mouth breathing, Noisy Breathing, Snoring, UARS, Sleep Apnea and oral muscle dysfunction. This may affect children as well as adults.

13)Can tongue ties cause TMJ problems?

When there is a tongue tie, some of the muscles are typically tight, pulling on the tongue when it attempts to function, but cannot because it is anchored to the floor of the mouth. This restricts the tongue from normal movement and function. The movements of the ‘tied’ tongue are then accompanied by many compensations like unfavorable movements of the TMJ, lower jaw, tension in the floor of the mouth, neck, face and head which can result in TMJ disorders.

14)Is Tongue Tie Release painful?

This is probably the most concerning question everyone has. A functional frenuloplasty is a straightforward outpatient procedure that can be completed in office without the need for general anesthesia. For infants after the application of the numbing gel in infants or local anaesthesia, we ensure there is zero to minimal discomfort to the baby during the laser frenectomy procedure. If a release is recommended, the treatment takes less than an hour. Dr. Ankita will apply an effective anesthetic that wears off approximately 60 minutes after the procedure is completed. For the first 5-6 days following surgery, mild pain is expected. This can usually be controlled with the help of some pain killers.

15)Which is better – laser or scissors?

BOTH instruments have proven to be successful in long-term treatment. What is important is that your provider must be skilled and trained.

In our opinion, a laser yields a more precise and complete result than scissors when treating an INFANT. Laser treatment limits the amount of bleeding as it cauterizes the tissues within your child’s mouth, minimizing risk of infection. We use proper laser settings and protective eye wear is worn by the team.

For adults we have seen a more precise fascial tongue tie release using the Functional Frenuloplasty Procedure. Dr. Ankita Shah is the only Zaghi trained provider in India.

16)Is Myofunctional Therapy Necessary before and after a tongue tie release?

Pre- and post-operative myofunctional therapy is essential and critical for optimal recovery and success of the frenuloplasty procedure. Our tongue-tie release procedure is based on precision: releasing the appropriate extent of tissues for maximal relief; not too much, and not too little. The success of our practice is based on our ability to provide a complete and effective release of tethered oral tissues by incorporating a multidisciplinary protocol that integrates myofunctional therapy (and sometimes physical therapy) both before, during, and after surgery. You also need to undergo physical therapy rehabilitation after the surgery for your muscle-balance-posture is retrained.

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