The mouth is a complex set of muscles and tendons that work together to aid in the most basic tasks. From simple things like talking, chewing, or smiling to complex actions like whistling or playing a musical instrument – each part has its place.
One part of the mouth that is often overlooked until it becomes an issue: the frenum or frenulum. The frenum is a small piece of connective tissue that connects the lip, cheeks and tongue to the gums and helps to keep them in place. If the frenum becomes overly tight and restricts movement, it can cause problems. This is when a frenectomy is needed.
At Big Apple Pediatric Dentistry, we understand the importance of keeping your child’s mouth functioning correctly. We offer state-of-the-art frenectomy procedures that can help restore normal movement of your child’s mouth and prevent further issues. If your child needs a frenectomy in Phoenix or if you are searching for a kids dentist near me, Phoenix pediatric dentist, or pediatric dentist Chandler, AZ, we can help. To schedule an appointment, call (602) 935-7427 or complete the online booking form.
A frenectomy is a simple surgical procedure that involves the removal of an overly tight frenum to restore normal movement of the mouth and eliminate potential problems. It is typically done on small children, takes only a few minutes and can be completed in one visit.
If a frenum is overly tight or restricts movement, a child may be a candidate for a frenectomy. Signs that your child needs a frenectomy include:
🍎Difficulty closing their lips
🍎Difficulties with brushing and flossing
🍎Tongue pain and/or difficulty moving their tongue (tongue tie)
Frenum are found in different parts of the mouth, including the upper and lower lips, cheeks, and tongue.
The labial frenum is found in the upper lip and connects the gum tissue to the upper lip. A labial frenum that is too tight can cause problems such as a gap between the two front teeth or difficulty smiling or talking. A gap between the front teeth, known as diastema, can be caused due to tension and may cause orthodontic issues. To improve smiling, speaking, and eating, a maxillary frenectomy, also known as a labial frenectomy, can be performed to reduce the tension.
The lingual frenum is found on the underside of the tongue that connects to the lower gums and jaw. Know commonly as a “tongue tie,” an overly tight lingual frenum can cause difficulty with speech, eating, breathing, sleep apnea, and normal tongue function. Infants with a tongue tie can find breastfeeding difficult, so a lingual frenectomy is often recommended.
The buccal frenum is found on the inside of the cheek and connects to both sides of the gumline between the upper and lower molars. If this frenum becomes too tight, it can cause difficulty in moving the mouth and speaking.
Before the procedure, Dr.Martinez will perform a thorough oral examination and discuss the options for treatment. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to ask.
A frenectomy is a simple, minimally invasive procedure, only taking a few minutes to complete. It can be performed using either traditional or soft tissue laser techniques, depending on the needs of each patient. The procedure is performed under local anesthesia, so no discomfort is involved. If additional sedation may be required, Dr.Martinez will discuss that with you. .
After the procedure, your child can return home and continue their usual activities. It’s suggested that they avoid physically demanding activities for a few days for proper healing. Your child may experience mild discomfort, swelling, mild fever, or bruising in the affected area, but this is common and will improve after recovery.
You will be given specific instructions for home care on how to help your child manage any pain or discomfort and speed up the healing process. It is very important that you follow these instructions carefully.
A diastema is a gap between the two front teeth that is caused by an oversized labial frenum. Orthodontic treatment can fix diastema, but it’s best to get a frenectomy after the orthodontic treatment is almost complete. It can be done before braces are removed to achieve the desired alignment. A frenectomy lessens the tension on the tissue, which helps keep the teeth in their new aligned position.
If your child is experiencing any of the symptoms listed above, Dr. Martinez and his caring team can provide an expert assessment and individualized treatment plan for your child. With years of experience in pediatric dentistry, he provides the highest quality care with a gentle touch. We accept children of all ages and can provide sedation options for those who are anxious or have special needs.
If you are searching for a kids dentist near me, the best pediatric dentist Phoenix, or a pediatric dentist Chandler, AZ, we can help. To schedule an appointment, call (602) 935-7427 or complete the online booking form.
Yes, you can eat after a frenectomy. However, it’s important to avoid sharp, spicy, and acidic foods or liquids for the first 72 hours. It’s recommended to follow a soft diet such as spaghetti, smoothies, mashed potatoes, yogurt, or other easy-to-chew foods during this time.
It will take about four weeks for a complete recovery. During this time, it’s important to follow the instructions provided by your doctor on how to care for the area after the operation. It’s also important to attend any follow-up appointments to monitor healing.
There are some potential risks associated with a frenectomy such as pain, minor bleeding, infection, and scarring. However, these risks can be minimized with proper care following the procedure.
After your surgery, avoid rinsing your mouth or brushing your teeth. The following day, rinse your mouth every 6 hours with warm salt water. When brushing your teeth, be area the area of surgery. If you experience pain, you can wait for 1 or 2 more days before brushing.
The dental laser uses light energy to vaporize tissue and cauterizes the blood vessels, resulting in very little discomfort or risk. Your baby’s experience will be pain-free.