Sometimes, patients present a tight frenum, or fold of tissue that restricts motion of the lip and/or tongue. These ties can cause difficulty with breastfeeding, bottle-feeding, swallowing, breathing, dental decay, spacing of the front teeth, speech impediments, and digestive issues. To gain complete range of motion of the tongue and release the lip, a frenectomy (also called frenotomy) is recommended. This surgery is a common dental procedure that can be performed either with a scalpel or a laser. The advantages of using the laser method are:
At Happy Pediatric Dentistry, we make sure that frenectomy procedures are a success by providing a post-op protocol and training the parents to follow up with kid-friendly stretching exercises to prevent re-attachment. These exercises are pleasant for the child/baby and should be started before the procedure is preformed.
A pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste can be used after the child is old enough not to swallow it. By age 6 or 7, children should be able to brush and floss their own teeth twice a day with supervision until about age 8 or 9 to make sure they are doing a thorough job.
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