Ankyloglossia or tongue-tie is the condition where the tongue is tethered to the floor of the mouth by the frenulum (small fold of tissue under the tongue). This usually results in reduced mobility of the tongue. It is commonly observed that a person with tongue-tie cannot protrude the tongue tip beyond the edge of the lower teeth or touch the area behind the upper front teeth. Sometimes when a person with tongue-tie attempts to stick out the tongue it forms a characteristic " W " shape.
Who needs evaluation for tongue-tie surgery?
Infants with feeding difficulties or failure to thrive
Children with speech impairment
Poor dental hygiene from food debris stuck in the teeth
What is involved with tongue tie surgery?
This out-patient procedure typically takes a few minutes in the operating room under a very short general anesthesia. A band of tissue under the tongue is released to allow for immediate improvement of tongue mobility. On rare occasions, children might experience transient swelling in the jaw or neck area after surgery which typically resolves in a few days.