A frenectomy may sound like an odd procedure but it is a very common one used to correct excessive tissue found in particular areas of the oral cavity. This particular tissue is found either beneath the tongue or above the front teeth connecting the gums to the upper lip. If the tissue here is surgically removed it is called a labial frenectomy. If the tissue found on the underside of the tongue is removed through oral surgery, it is known as a lingual frenectomy. Typically, the frenulum is surgically repaired during childhood. If patients are concerned over their children needing frenulum addressed, they should come to our office at Dynamic Dental Care for a free cosmetic dentistry evaluation. If surgery is required, we can schedule that as well.
How Does the Excessive Tissue Form?
Genetics is the cause of the development of the extra bit of tissue. Frenum beneath the tongue can be seen if a patient reaches their tongue to the roof of their mouth. It is the thin bit of connective tissue which stretches from the bottom of their tongue to the floor of their mouth. One can also be seen when patients flip their upper lip there is one which connects the underside of the lip to the gums of the front teeth. When the lingual frenum is too short, which is the connective tissue beneath the tongue, patients can be tongue-tied and find it difficult to speak. In infancy, it can make it difficult for them to latch appropriately when breastfeeding. Having a short lingual frenum can also restrict the movement of the tongue which in turn makes it hard to enunciate words. Girls are much less likely than boys to suffer from this. Surprisingly, being tongue-tied can also make it difficult to swallow. Thankfully, with a lingual frenectomy, these concerns can be easily corrected. The procedure is quick and simple to perform.
While most people can understand the above issues, they might not consider having problems with either the labial or the lingual frenum can cause problems with proper brushing and flossing. If the frenum is not taken care of correctly, lack of oral health care can lead to gum disease and tooth decay.
The corrective surgery is known as a maxillary frenectomy and generally takes less than 15 minutes. The results are impressive and stark. Patients who have this done are able to brush and floss more easily and can, once again, enunciate their words clearer. The results are undeniable and the procedure easy and quick, performed at a single appointment. Whether speech is affected or swallowing compromised, the frenectomy procedure can take care of them both. Before we can perform the procedure, we will need to do a full assessment to make sure the frenum is the problem. Even if we discover frenum is not causing the problem, we can offer guidance and treatment procedures to address whatever symptoms or issues patients may have.
We are available today at Dynamic Dental Care to answer all of your questions and provide any information necessary for patients to make decisions about their care. Call us at (509) 466-2587 today.