Making Time to Address Lip and Tongue Ties in Infants -- By Conner Keyeski
Lip ties and tongue ties or ankyloglossia can be a problematic condition in infants and children if not identified early.
A lip tie is when the frenulum, the piece of tissue that connects the upper lip to the upper gums, is too tight and does not allow the lip to function properly. Similarly, a tongue tie is when the frenulum under the tongue that connects to the floor of the mouth is too tight or is attached in a position other than the middle of the tongue. There are four classifications of tongue ties based on location and severity.
I have cared for children with lip and tongue ties, but I also have a personal connection as both of my daughters were born with them. So I've experienced first-hand the medical and emotional toll this condition can create on a family. What I've learned most of all is that it's essential to have enough time in medical appointments to discover what is happening and how best to treat any issues before they get problematic.
My own experience, plus my practice treating families for many years, has taught me that lip and tongue ties are often discovered when an infant is having difficulty breast feeding or if the infant is losing weight. Not only are these conditions troublesome for the infant but they are also stressful and painful for the breast-feeding mother.
Lip and tongue ties can cause long term complications if not identified and treated. Poor speech articulation, misaligned teeth, chewing difficulties, and breathing troubles are a few issues that can be seen in older children.
Often times, lip and tongue ties are not identified and misdiagnosed by health care providers, which can lead to extended issues for the child and unnecessary stress on the breastfeeding relationship. Therefore, having a health care provider that spends extended time with families during visits allows for a thorough assessment to identify such issues before they become problematic, then come up with a treatment plan.
Atma Clinic providers can assist in guiding patients and parents through their health journey and achieving optimal health.
Find holistic care for your whole family at Atma Clinic, and consider contacting Conner today for your first appoint (which is free) by calling us at 785/760-0695.