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Tongue-tie: Symptoms And Treatments

Tongue, the strongest muscle of our body, needs to move freely to reach every nook and corner of your mouth. It also serves various purposes such as it aids you in making different sounds as you speak, allows you to swallow your food and prevents food bits from sticking around in your mouth.

Imagine not being able to move your tongue freely, this is what tongue-tie is. Common in babies, tongue-tie restricts the freedom of tongue to move in different directions. This happens when a strong and thick tissue ties the tip of your tongue to the bottom of the mouth. For some babies, this is not an issue, but for others, it might cause problems like difficulty in swallowing and speaking.

Symptoms of tongue-tie
Babies with tongue-tie may face difficulty in moving their tongue in a range of directions. Some signs and symptoms of tongue tie are:
• The difficulty faced in lifting the tongue to the upper set of teeth and moving it to different sides.
• Babies face problem while latching and they are likely to chew more than suck for milk.
• Since milk intake in affected, babies with tongue-tie do not gain weight quick.
• Babies with tongue-tie cannot stick their tongue out precisely
• If they manage to stick it out past their lower front teeth, then you may see the tip of the tongue appears to be V or heart-shaped.
• Babies with tongue-tie face difficulty in feeding are fussy and make a clicking sound while feeding.

Treatments
Tongue-tie can be treated in two ways.
• Frenotomy
This is a simple procedure that takes place in the doctor’s clinic. The baby does not need numbing drugs for it because all that the doctor does is take a pair of clean and sanitized scissors and snips the frenulum slightly. The frenulum does not have a lot of blood vessels which is why they’re not much pain. There are few drops of blood, the healing and recovery are quick and takes place while breastfeeding.

• Frenuloplasty
When the frenulum is thick the doctor will have to opt for this procedure. The baby is given anesthesia and the doctor will use a special tool or instrument to detach the frenulum and put in few stitches which will dissolve on their own. Some hospitals may also use a laser instead, and the child will not have to go through stitches.

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