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1201 SE 223rd Ave.
Gresham, OR 97030
(503) 663-8141
Douglas Park DDS Pediatric Dentistry Douglas Park DDS Pediatric Dentistry Spaceship

What is a Frenectomy?


Gapped teeth with excess gum tissue
A frenulum is a fold of tissue that anchors an organ, preventing it from moving around too much. The mouth is home to two different frena. One attaches the tongue to the floor of the mouth. The other secures the upper lip to the gums. Some children are born with significant restrictions, which can affect their ability to breastfeed or take a bottle. These restrictions can cause other complications as well. At Douglas L. Park, DDS, Pediatric Dentistry, we can alleviate these issues with a frenectomy.

Tongue Ties and Lip Ties


Tongue ties and lip ties occur when the frenulum that anchors the tongue or the lip is too short or too tight. A tongue tie can prohibit an infant from being able to nurse effectively, or even at all. It can cause significant pain for the mother as well. A tongue tie can even affect the ability of an infant to feed from a bottle.

A tongue tie can affect more than just the ability of a child to nurse. As your child grows older, it can affect proper speech development. It can make swallowing properly more difficult, or even affect the growth and development of the mouth. Additionally, a tongue tie can also affect the ability of your child to enjoy the simple pleasures of childhood, including licking an ice cream cone or sticking out their tongue to catch a snowflake in the winter.

A lip tie can also affect the ability of an infant to latch and nurse properly, which can, in turn, cause significant pain for the mother. In addition to poor latch, a lip tie can also lead to the development of a space between the two front teeth, known as a diastema. Not only can this affect the smile of your child, but it can also increase their risk of developing cavities and raise their risk for repeated frenulum trauma.

What is a Frenectomy?


A frenectomy is a procedure that involves cutting the frenulum. This is done to enable the tongue or lip to move more freely and effectively. In the past, the frenectomy was performed using a scalpel, and involved stitches afterward. Today, however, the procedure is performed using a laser. The laser vaporizes the tissue and cauterizes as it cuts. With a laser, the procedure causes much less discomfort. It can also reduce the risk of infection as well as reduce downtime.

Benefits of a Frenectomy


There are many benefits of a frenectomy.
•  Improved latch for more effective nursing. A better latch leads to improved milk production and better nutrition for the infant. Proper latch can also eliminate the pain felt by the mother while nursing.
•  An improved breastfeeding relationship between mother and child.
•  Your child can develop proper speech patterns.
•  The mouth and teeth can develop normally. A frenectomy can help to prevent issues with palatal development, the spacing of their teeth, and can also reduce the risk of cavities.

What to Expect After Treatment


Performing a frenectomy with a laser greatly reduces bleeding and discomfort. The laser also stimulates tissue healing, which can aid in promoting faster healing. Following a frenectomy for a breastfed child, you can nurse immediately. If a local anesthetic has been used, your child may have some difficulty at first. Breastmilk contains healing properties for your child and can provide them with comfort after the procedure is complete. Keeping the mouth clean following a frenectomy is important for preventing infections. We will provide you with specific instructions for aftercare once the frenectomy is complete.

A frenectomy can help to correct feeding complications and prevent developmental complications later. For more information, call Douglas L. Park, DDS, Pediatric Dentistry today at (503) 663-8141.

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Location 1201 SE 223rd Ave.
Gresham, OR 97030

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(503) 663-8141

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Douglas L. Park DDS Pediatric Dentistry | www.parkdds.com | (503) 663-8141
1201 SE 223rd Ave. Suite 240, Gresham, OR 97030
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