Jerger Pediatric Dentistry
Laser Dentistry, Laser Frenectomies
Does your young child have trouble latching on while nursing? Does an older child have a large gap between their front teeth or are they having difficult pronouncing certain words? You might be seeing the effects of a frenulum that is too thick or tight.
WHAT IS A FRENULUM?
A frenulum is a piece of skin that connects two parts of the body so that they do not separate completely. In the mouth, you have a few different frenula, including:
Lingual Frenulum: The lingual frenulum is located under your child’s tongue.
Labial Superior Frenulum (upper): The labial superior frenulum is located in the top of your child’s mouth in the center, under their lip, and is attached to their gums.
Labial Inferior Frenulum (lower): The labial inferior frenulum attaches the inside of your child’s lower lip to their gums.
WHAT IS A FRENECTOMY?
In some cases, a frenulum is too tight or thick to allow a child to properly use their mouth. For instance, some children are born with a lingual frenulum that is so thick and tight that it prevents them from being able to lift their tongue. This condition is often referred to as “tongue tied,” and it can seriously impact the child, making it so they can’t properly nurse or drink from a bottle. When the labial frenula are too big, they can create spacing issues in the teeth and affect speech development.
Without proper treatment, the frenulum can interfere with your child’s development and the way that their lips and tongue develop. It is important that they are seen as early as possible in order to minimize the amount of treatment needed. A frenectomy is a procedure that is done to reduce your child’s frenulum so that they can have proper mobility of their lips and tongue.
HOW IS A FRENECTOMY DONE?
At Jerger Pediatric Dentistry, frenectomies are done using a special laser. The actual procedure is quick – the laser is used to remove the frenulum tissue and then the area is sutured.
Dr. Bret and our entire staff have extensive training and many years of experience with frenectomies so the procedure is streamlined. Our specialized laser cuts down both the time needed for the procedure and the healing time for your child.
Some dental offices and hospitals simply clip the frenulum. While effective, this technique takes longer to heal and can be more traumatizing to your child. Laser frenectomies are safer and less invasive than the traditional clipping method. Using a laser allows us to be more precise and lowers the risk of infection and unnecessary discomfort.
, Laser Frenectomies