What is Tongue/Lip Tie

Have you noticed lately that many babies are being diagnosed with lip and or tongue tie?  Are they really significant and do they really affect breastfeeding?  How are they treated?  Short term, a lip or tongue tie can cause difficulty with nursing and long term it can cause other problems such as dental decay or problems with spacing in the teeth, and speech problems.

Lip and tongue tie can cause some breast feeding difficulties, but they definitely do not cause all the problems.  It is important if you think your baby has one of these that you get evaluated by a professional trained in looking for these.  Some practitioners think this is a fad, but they are not up to date on the current information.  If you have been told, no, this is not a problem, and you feel it is, it might be helpful to get a second opinion.  If it turns out these are not the problems, it is time to look to other things that might be causing the issues.

Simple signs that your baby has lip or tongue tie

  • Falling asleep while nursing: it takes more effort for a baby that is tongue-tied to nurse, so they get tired faster.
  • Poor latch. Including, but not limited to, not opening mouth wide enough, nursing at the end of the nipple, and gumming or chewing the nipple.
  • Reflux and colic symptoms. Not all, but definitely some.
  • Blisters on the lip – baby can’t flange upper lip properly
  • Shorter sleep episodes – baby isn’t getting enough milk, so they are hungrier quicker
  • Can’t hold the pacifier in
  • Not gaining weight at an appropriate rate

Treatment Options

Lip and/or tongue tie doesn’t always result in a frenotomy, also known as a tongue tie or lip tie revision. If your baby has one, and you have no problems nursing, there is no treatment needed.  However, if it is needed, it is a procedure that is well tolerated.  Dr. Ghaheri, a local leading specialist at The Oregon Clinic, performs frenotomies via a quick laser treatment.

If your child has these problems, it is good to go to a chiropractor that is trained in craniosacral and trained in looking for these issues.  Dr. Chard is trained in doing this and sees many babies a week for this issue.  She works together with lactation consultants and Dr. Ghaheri to treat this condition.  It is good to come in pre and post frenotomy.  At that time, a treatment plan will be made.

Please visit drghaheri.com for more information