Lip Ties/Tongue Ties


Frequently Asked Questions:

How Will I Know If My Baby Has A Lip Or Tongue Tie?

If you are having frustrations during nursing (pain, blistering/bleeding, fullness after nursing) or your baby is having a difficult time with breast or bottle feeding (unable to latch or shallow latch, frequent release/ re-latch, top lip tucked in, poor weight gain, gas/reflux, gumming/chewing at the nipples, leaking milk, clicking or gulping sounds while nursing), your baby may have a restrictive lip or tongue.

My Baby Can Stick Their Tongue Out Past Their Lips, So Could They Still Have A Tongue Tie?

Yes! Being able to move the tongue out past the lips means they can move their tongue well in one direction, but that doesn’t mean they can move their tongue well in all directions. The most important direction for the tongue to move during breastfeeding is up not out.

Can Speech Problems Result From a Tongue Tie?

Yes. Most often the R, S, L, Z, D, CH, TH, and SH sounds are affected during speech. Many children will learn to make adaptations in order to create these sounds, but the adaptation may create muscle tension. Speech therapy helps with these adaptations and provides a support system for the child so they may learn to use their tongue properly while making these sounds. If speech therapy alone is not enough, then revision may be beneficial.

Can A Tongue Or Lip Tie Cause Cavities?

No, but a lip tie may be so thick that it causes food to be trapped near the two front teeth and may also interfere with proper self-cleansing and tooth brushing. For the tongue tie, it may be difficult or impossible for the tongue to reach the outsides of the back teeth preventing self- cleansing.

Can There Be a Tongue Tie Even If Underneath Their Tongue Looks Normal?

Yes. A posterior tongue tie can be present with or without an anterior tongue tie. A posterior tongue tie is usually the cause of the real restriction during breastfeeding; so, release of the anterior tie alone typically does not resolve the problem.

Who Should I See First If I Am Having Nursing Difficulties & Suspect A Lip Or Tongue Tie?

If you are having difficulties with nursing, we recommend you see a lactation consultant (IBCLC) to provide assistance with the breastfeeding relationship between you and your baby. Other reasons for difficulty breastfeeding could be traumatic delivery/shoulder dystocia, milk or protein allergy, poor milk supply, nipple anatomy, or thrush. It is very important to visit a lactation specialist to diagnose a nursing problem and rule out other issues. If they suspect a problem with the physical function of the baby’s tongue or lip, they will refer you to a pediatric dentist for revision.

I'm Not Having Any Issues With Breastfeeding, But It Looks Like My Baby Has A Lip Tie. What Should I Do?

Nothing! Enjoy your healthy breastfeeding relationship. A lip frenum may appear thick but not be restrictive. It is more important to focus on how the lip and tongue function and less about what they look like.

Will My Insurance Cover The Revision?

Medical insurance is filed as a courtesy to the parent. Payment for revision is collected up front, then the medical insurance is filed. Reimbursement from medical insurance will be provided directly to the insurance policy holder. Reimbursement is determined by the policy holder's specific medical insurance coverage and deductible. Medical insurance codes can be given to the parent to inquire about reimbursement from their medical provider. Medicaid plans require pre-authorization for coverage of revision, and pre-authorization can typically be sent prior to your appointment. Our office does not file Tricare medical insurance policies.

Is General Anesthesia Needed For The Procedure?

No. Infants who can be swaddled can be treated quickly and safely in the office without general anesthesia or sedation. Also, older children who can cooperate in the dental chair for cleanings and other routine care, can also be treated quickly and safely in the office without general anesthesia or sedation.

Are Stretches Necessary To Prevent Reattachment?

Yes. Stretches are necessary to prevent reattachment of a revised lip or posterior tongue tie for four weeks while the baby relearns how to properly use their tongue and lip muscles.

We perform all of our laser surgeries using proper recommended safety precautions, including requiring everyone in the surgical areas to wear laser safety glasses. These precautions ensure that our surgeries are safe, quick, and void of any known complications. There is no known complication for tongue and lip tie laser surgery in a healthy infant. Following the procedure, you can expect little to no bleeding and only minimal discomfort for your infant. A tongue or a lip tie can be released using a laser in as little as 10-15 seconds. Our use of the minimally invasive “Laser Light” generally allows your infant to breastfeed immediately following the procedure. Our team offers a comprehensive approach to oral health care, with an array of services to meet the needs of our children in one convenient location. Our dedicated and experienced staff, uses the latest techniques and technology and functions as a team to ensure your child receives the finest professional treatment from the very first moment of their initial visit.