Little Penguin Pediatric Dentistry

logo - Little Penguin Pediatric Dentistry | Prosper, TX

Is Your Child Fussy? Here Are 5 Signs
That They May Need a Frenectomy

title-deco - Little Penguin Pediatric Dentistry | Prosper, TX

February 9, 2024

Have you ever wondered what those small pieces of skin under your tongue and lips are for? They’re called frenula and they serve as connectors for the lips and tongue to keep them from moving excessively. In children, these connective tissues can become thick and restrict their ability to perform basic oral tasks. A frenectomy is needed in these cases to restore function.

But how do you know when your child needs one? Continue reading to learn five signs that your child needs a frenectomy to improve their quality of life.

1. Difficulty Breastfeeding

Girl Sipping Soup - Little Penguin Pediatric Dentistry | Prosper, TX

One of the earliest signs that your child’s frenulum is too thick is difficulty breastfeeding. Infants with a tight lingual frenulum, also known as tongue-tie, may struggle to latch properly and feed effectively. This can lead to poor weight gain, frustration during feeding sessions, and even nipple pain for breastfeeding mothers.

2. Speech Difficulties

As children grow older, a tongue-tie can affect their speech development. Children with these ties may have difficulty articulating certain sounds, such as “l,” “r,” and “th.” They may also experience speech impediments like lisping or difficulty forming certain words.

3. Dental Issues

A tight labial frenulum, also known as lip-tie, can contribute to dental problems in children. When the frenulum is attached too close to the gumline, it can create a gap between the front teeth or even cause them to become misaligned.

In addition, a lip-tie may make cleaning their teeth more difficult. This can increase the amount of plaque and bacteria that remains in their mouth after brushing, leading to tooth decay and gum disease.

4. Open Mouth Breathing

If your child has a lip tie, it can prevent their mouth from closing properly. Without the correct mouth posture, they’ll default to breathing through their mouth instead of their nose. The nostrils are filters for the air your child breathes. Constant open-mouth breathing could increase the likelihood of them catching airborne sicknesses. which causes open-mouth breathing.

5. Gum Recession

In some cases, lip-ties can cause even more damage to your child’s dental health by pulling on their gums. Because the frenulum is so close to the edge of their gums and so tight, it can lead to gum recession, exposing the roots of their teeth. Over time this can cause discomfort and leave them more susceptible to tooth decay.

If you notice any of these signs in your child, it may be best to consult with a pediatric dentist experienced in frenectomies. This procedure releases the tight or restrictive tissue safely. By intervening early in your child’s development, you can help alleviate symptoms and ensure oral comfort from now on!

About the Practice

You won’t trust the oral health of your child to just anyone, especially if they need special care like a frenectomy. Dr. Julia Peng and Dr. Holvin Louie are gentle, professional, and highly experienced pediatric dentists who make your child’s health their priority. They can provide all the oral care your little one may need and strive to make their every experience of dentistry a positive one. Call (469) 361-1600 to schedule a frenectomy consultation at Little Penguin Pediatric Dentistry, or visit the website to learn more.