What Are Frenectomy Procedures?

A frenectomy is a simple surgical procedure that involves the removal of one or both frena from the mouth. The frenum is a connective tissue membrane that attaches one surface within the mouth to another. Frenum means bridle in Latin, and this term is used because it restricts tongue movements when it is connected by a frenulum between two surfaces inside of the mouth or pharynx. The two types of frenum are known as the labial frenum and the lingual frenum. In some cases, a frenectomy can help with breastfeeding and relieving respiratory issues.

Labial Frenectomy

A labial frenectomy is a procedure that removes the small tissue connecting the upper lip to the gum between your two front teeth. It can also cause gum recession by lifting the gums off of the jawbone.

Lingual Frenectomy

The lingual frenum is a small fold of tissue in the middle of the underside of the tongue. It can be positioned too far forward, which can cause it to over-tighten and restrict your tongue’s movement when it comes to speaking, singing, and eating. Lingual frenum, also known as being “tongue-tied,” can also impede an infant’s ability to latch during breastfeeding or eating from a bottle.

Benefits of a Frenectomy

There are several benefits to having a frenectomy. Those include:

  • Improves appetite and eating in infants and children
  • Improves speech function
  • Improves bite function
  • Helps to reduce pain and discomfort
  • Promotes self-confidence in children and teens by eliminating gaps in the smile

What Happens After a Frenectomy

In most cases, the pain from a frenectomy is mild, and it heals quickly. The patient can have normal function of the lips and tongue. Many patients hardly notice the effects of the surgery.

 

For more information about frenectomies and if one is right for your child, give one of our two offices a call. We’re always happy to explain more and help you decide if it’s right for your child.