Adults Can Benefit from a Lingual Frenectomy

Adults Can Benefit from a Lingual Frenectomy

Posted by Dr. Alicia Abeyta DDS FAGD on Mar 24 2021, 12:47 AM

Adults can benefit from a lingual frenectomy to help with common issues such as:

  • Tooth decay and swollen, irritated gums.
  • Restricted movement of the tongue.
  • Speech
  • Swallowing
  • Chewing
  • Mouth breathing
  • Sleep apnea

What is Tongue Tie?

Tongue-tie, also known as ankyloglossia, is a condition that occurs when the lingual frenulum, the small piece of skin that connects the bottom of the tongue to the bottom of the mouth is too thick, too short, or attached too far up on the tongue, causing restriction of the tongue.  It can impact oral and facial development, which in turn impacts the development of the airway, making it more collapsible.

How is Tongue Tie Treated?

The most common treatment for tongue-tie is a surgery called a lingual frenectomy.  A lingual frenectomy is a surgical procedure that removes the frenulum. During the operation, your dentist will make a small cut on the frenulum to free up the tongue. The procedure is also referred to as a frenuloplasty.  

A lingual frenectomy wasn’t nearly as common several decades ago as they are today, which means a lot of adults are living with a tongue-tie that they didn’t even know they had. Nor do they realize how much it’s impacting their life.

Alongside surgery, myofunctional therapy, and sometimes craniosacral therapy can be incorporated into the treatment.  These are a type of physical therapy that helps to reprogram the tongue and muscles in and around the mouth.

What Should You Expect After Surgery?

You may experience:

  • Some bleeding
  • Swelling
  • Soreness 

Let your doctor know if any of the symptoms are severe.  Typical recovery time is about one week.

What are the benefits of Having Surgery for Tongue Tie?

Tongue tie has been linked to:

  • Several sleep conditions such as snoring and sleep apnea.  
  • Mouth breathing. There is a reason we breathe through our nose.  The nose filters, moisturizes and humidifies the air before it enters the lungs. Mouth breathing skips this entire process. 
  • Dental issues. Did you know our tongues help keep your teeth clean? It also encourages saliva production, which neutralizes the acids in the mouth so that they don’t damage the enamel on the teeth.  Restricted range of motion due to a tongue tie might mean more decay and cavities, especially to the molars. 

While elective frenectomies aren’t for everyone, they can make a positive impact on your life, especially if you have any of the above conditions.   

To learn more about tongue tie and if a lingual frenectomy procedure could be a life changer contact the office of Dr. Abeyta, in Albuquerque, NM to schedule a consultation at 505-293-7611.

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