Anterior tongue tie is a common diagnosis for many newborns and infants. Although tongue ties are not uncommon, many parents are not aware of the conditions and symptoms or available treatments.

At Lasertots, we are experienced in utilizing  dental laser treatments to quickly and painlessly correct a number of tongue and lip tie conditions, including anterior tongue ties.

For more information on anterior tongue tie and to learn more about our dental laser treatments, keep reading below or contact us today to book a consultation with the dentist.

Everything Parents Need to Know About Anterior Tongue Ties

An anterior tongue tie is a condition commonly diagnosed at birth. This condition refers to when the tip of the tongue is fused to the floor of the infant’s mouth.

Although anterior tongue tie is not a dangerous condition, this does cause a number of symptoms that can be frustrating for both babies and parents.

Anterior Tongue Tie Symptoms in Infants

The visible symptoms of anterior tongue tie in infants include:

  • A notched or heart shaped tongue.
  • Difficulty lifting their tongue up or moving it side to side.
  • Trouble sticking their tongue out.

While anterior tongue tie is often diagnosed during a baby’s newborn exam, it’s not always easy to spot right away and can be easily overlooked during the busyness of birth. These are the easiest tongue ties to recognize and are often released by the pediatrician at birth or soon after. Unfortunately, they are sometimes incompletely released and breastfeeding problems may continue to persist. Almost all anterior ties have a posterior component to it that may not have been addressed.

Common breastfeeding problems babies with an anterior tongue tie experience are:

  • Difficulty breastfeeding. Many infants born with an anterior tongue tie will have trouble attaching and staying attached for a full feed.
  • Trouble gaining weight and seeming unsettled and hungry all the time. The difficulty many babies with anterior tongue tie experience with breastfeeding often causes a number of other problems including an inability to gain weight and constant hunger.
  • Clicking sounds when they feed. Some babies will also make a clicking sounds when breastfeeding due to their inability to properly attach.

Anterior Tongue Tie Signs in Breastfeeding Parents

Because an anterior tongue tie heavily interferes with a baby’s ability to breastfeed, it can also cause problems for the breastfeeding parent. If you are breastfeeding your infant and notice these symptoms, you may want to check if your baby is struggling with an anterior tongue tie:

  • Severe pain with latching
  • Incomplete breast drainage
  • Constant or chronic pain during nursing
  • Infected nipples
  • Plugged ducts or nipple trauma such as cracking, bleeding, bruising, creasing or flattened nipples

Benefits of Anterior Tongue Tie Treatment

Although an anterior tongue tie is not life threatening or dangerous, it is still important to have the condition treated by an experienced health professional to relieve symptoms and help both you and your baby be more comfortable.

Releasing your baby’s tongue tie will help:

  • Make breastfeeding more comfortable
  • Relieve breastfeeding pain and improve nipple and breast health
  • Regain and protecting adequate milk production
  • Ensure your baby is properly fed and nourished for health growth

By correcting these issues, tongue tie release will make breastfeeding easier on you and your baby and allow you and your baby to bond easier.

Even if you are not breastfeeding, correcting your baby’s tongue tie will be beneficial in preventing a number of other issues and complications.

Additional benefits of anterior tongue tie treatment include: 

  • Avoid serious long term issues with palatal development, tooth spacing and dental caries
  • Preventing speech issues caused by tongue tie
  • Allowing your child to develop normal swallowing pattern
  • Reducing the risk of choking by allowing for full movement and control of the tongue
  • Reducing the risk of developing an atypically strong gag reflex

Treatments for Anterior Tongue Tie

Back in the days of old, midwives were known to keep one of their fingernails long so that they would be able to cut and correct a newborn’s tongue tie at birth.

Luckily, treatment for anterior tongue tie has come a long way since then, and we have developed scientifically advanced procedures to correct tongue ties quickly and painlessly.

Today, dentists use one of two methods to treat anterior tongue tie: scalpel/scissors or dental lasers.

How Does Dental Laser Treatment Work?

Soft tissue laser treatment for anterior tongue tie is an advanced, simple and safe procedure for releasing your child’s tongue. This procedure takes less than a few seconds to complete and works by “vaporizing” the soft tissue with light energy.

The Benefits of Dental Laser Treatment for Anterior Tongue Tie

While scissor/scalpel and laser are effective and quick procedures for treating tongue tie, dental laser treatments have been shown to have a number of benefits over scalpel or treatments.

Dental Lasers Offer a Painless Procedure with Minimal Discomfort

Because dental lasers do not actually cut the tissue, they are able to provide a quick, procedure for your child. Lasers release an intense heat which is why some people report pain if not anesthetized. An experienced dentist can do this very quickly which minimizes the trauma to the tissue and therefore minimizes post-operative pain.

For a newborn, freezing may not be required and will allow the baby to immediately breastfeeding postoperatively. The procedure often takes only a few seconds, much faster than it would take to give an injection. Often pre-operative sugar water or breast milk is very effective for pain control.

Dental Lasers Control and Minimize Bleeding

When a laser is used for tongue tie treatment, it vaporizes the tissue as it passes through. Because of this, laser procedures are able to prevent or minimize bleeding. Less bleeding also gives the dentist a clean field to visualize and do a complete release.

Dental Lasers Provide a Faster Healing Time

Healing time after dental laser treatments for anterior tongue tie is very quick because the laser stimulates bio-regeneration and healing.

Is your child struggling with symptoms of anterior tongue tie?

Contact us today
to learn more about dental laser treatment and book a consultation with our experienced dentist.