Tongue Tie

 

What is tongue tie?

A tongue-tie occurs when the embryological remnant of the tissue attaching the tongue to the floor of the mouth does not disappear when an infant is born. A lip-tie is when the upper lip remains attached to the upper gum.

How is it diagnosed?
It is often missed since it is not routinely checked for. However it usually causes problems with breastfeeding

since the infant cannot latch correctly if at all. The mother may have problems getting the baby to latch; or suffer with painful nipples or mastitis; or in worse cases the baby may fail to gain weight since he cannot get enough milk. The lactation consultant usually can diagnose it by looking in the baby’s mouth and by also palpating under the tongue for a ridge.

 

How does it affect the baby?
As I said already the baby may fail to thrive since he cannot get enough milk. However if the baby is not breastfed, it is usually missed and problems that can occur include reflux, colic, sleep apnea, speech difficulties and misalignment of teeth.


 

 

What are the treatment options?

A minor surgical procedure is done to release the tongue and lip (if there is also a lip tie). It is being recommended by most experts that the baby receives osteopathic treatment before and after to help speed up recovery and reduce the chance of reattachment of the tie. I can refer you to a lactation specialist in Dublin who can then refer you on for the surgical options.

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