Frenectomies (Tongue and Lip Tie Revisions) for Infants and Toddlers

A simple examination can determine if your child is a candidate for this minimal invasive procedure. We use the latest in laser technology which minimizes swelling and helps with rapid recovery.

What is a Frenectomy?

A frenectomy is the removal of tissue which can prevent normal movement and/or function of oral structures such as the tongue, lips, and cheeks. Abnormal frenum attachments can also affect the position of teeth and gingival tissues.

It is normal to have frenum attachments at various areas of the oral cavity. Only frenum attachments that are likely causing significant restriction of movement and function are recommended for revision.

Dr. Mason’s goal is to make nursing your child a pain-free and enjoyable experience. To learn more about the benefits of a tongue or lip tie revision (frenectomy), please call our office and schedule a consultation with Dr. Mason.

Who Can Benefit from a Frenectomy and is it Right for my Child?

  • Mothers’ with a painful latch while breastfeeding.
  • Babies with nursing sessions which have frequent breaks/clicks heard when latched, swallowing of air, gassy, fussy or colicky babies.
  • Babies with nursing a callous or blister in the midline of the top lip.
  • Children with speech delay or difficulty with sounds that require uniform elevation and/or extension of the tongue.
  • Children who frequently gag on foods when transitioning to solids, aversions of foods that require significant mastication before being swallowed.
  • Children with an increased incidence of dental caries on molar teeth.
  • Children with high arched palate or dental malocclusion.
When you’re ready to schedule your consultation, please complete the following questionnaire and checklist. A BeanTeam member will then call you to review the information with you and schedule your consultation.

Scheduling a Frenectomy Consultation

The next step after completing the checklist is to schedule a consultation appointment with Dr. Mason. While we suggest a morning appointment, a member of the BeanTeam will work with you to find a time that accommodates both you and your baby’s schedule.

During the consultation appointment, Dr. Mason will review the symptoms you selected on your checklist to determine if they are possibly related to a lip or tongue restriction of normal movement. After reviewing these items with you, a gentle “lap to lap” examination of your baby’s mouth will be performed. A “lap to lap” examination is when your baby is partially resting on your lap, facing up and towards you with his or her head resting on Dr. Mason’s lap. During the examination, Dr. Mason will be looking at the elasticity, length, muscle tension and insertion points of frenulums, the range of opening of the mouth, and the ability to flange the top lip. This part of the visit usually takes less than a minute.

Following the examination, Dr. Mason will let you know which (if any) revision(s) are recommended and explain how your babies’ specific findings may be related to any symptoms you and your baby may be experiencing. Dr. Mason will explain the revision procedure and healing process thoroughly with one or both parents. Dr. Mason will also demonstrate post-revision stretches and discuss whether a consultation with a lactation consultant would be beneficial (if you haven’t seen one already).

The typical frenum consultation can take anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes. If the decision is made to perform the procedure, we will have you sign a consent form and will usually complete the tongue or lip tie revision on the same day as the consultation. In this case, the appointment will generally take about one hour.

If you’re ready to move forward with the procedure, you can access and complete the frenectomy consent form by clicking the button below.

How is the Procedure Performed?
On the day of the tongue or lip tie revision please arrive a few minutes ahead of your scheduled appointment time. This will allow the BeanTeam to review any insurance copays, out of pocket expenses or complete any necessary forms (if it hasn’t been done already). Additionally, a member of our clinical team will again review the procedure with you, what to expect, and answer any questions you may have.

The revision procedure is done in our treatment room with the infant wrapped in a swaddling blanket and a specialized pillow to keep them in place. Older children simply relax on our memory foam chair and are able to watch a movie. Protective eyewear is given to all who are present in the room and we have special infant-sized glasses for your baby. Prior to the procedure, preoperative photos are taken (unless already taken at the consultation) and your baby is given a small amount of sucrose solution (a sterile mixture of sugar and water) if they are under the age of 6 months as a safe and effective form of analgesia. If your child is over 6 months old we can administer a local or topical anesthetic to minimize any discomfort during the revision. Using a state-of-the-art soft tissue laser, the procedure usually takes about 30 seconds, with a few breaks for visualization and positioning. Post-revision photos are then taken.

Using the soft tissue laser has 3 important advantages over traditional revision methods.

  1. There is minimal to no bleeding. This is because the tissue is cauterized as it’s being revised.
  2. There are no sutures needed.
  3. If you have a nursing infant, you are able to soothe your baby by nursing him or her right away.

After the revision is complete and before you leave, the clinical team and Dr. Mason will give you our after hours phone number (in case you have any emergent questions or concerns), review stretching techniques again, schedule your 1-week postoperative follow-up, and answer any questions you may have.

Postprocedure Follow-up
The follow-up appointment is set for 1 week from the date of your child’s frenum revision. This appointment allows Dr. Mason to check the healing process and evaluate how you are doing with the postoperative stretches. If you’re having difficulty with the stretches, Dr. Mason will do a hands-on demonstration of proper stretching technique. At this time a member of the clinical team will complete a postoperative questionnaire with you and take postoperative photos which are placed into your child’s dental chart and are used to compare the frenum(s) pre-and-postoperative appearance.

For more information on postoperative stretching please visit our Post Procedure Care page.

Lingual Frenectomy (Before & After) Photo Gallery

Patient One
Patient Two

Dr. Mason would like to extend a very special “thank you” to both Dr. Lawrence Kotlow and Dr. Bobby Ghaheri, for their help and expert knowledge and training they provided and for allowing us to use some of their information on our website. We couldn’t be more thankful for their help.

Still Have Some Questions?

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