Tongue Tie

Tongue Tie (Ankyloglossia)

ENT, Sinus & Hearing Care Center is at the forefront of diagnosing and treating various ear, nose, and throat conditions. Among these is a fairly common condition known as Tongue Tie or Ankyloglossia.

What is Tongue Tie (Ankyloglossia)?

Often referred to simply as tongue-tie, Ankyloglossia is characterized by a short, thick tissue band (lingual frenulum) tethering the tongue’s tip to the mouth’s floor. This restricts tongue mobility, impacting activities like feeding, swallowing, and speaking. While its precise cause remains a mystery, genetic predispositions are believed to play a part. With no concrete risk factors identified, it’s crucial to understand the signs and potential treatments available.

Recognizing the Symptoms

  • Difficulty in lifting or moving the tongue sideways
  • A noticeable heart-shape at the tongue’s tip
  • Challenges during breastfeeding in infants
  • Struggles with articulation or clear speech
  • Problems when transitioning to solid foods

Diagnosis at ENT, Sinus & Hearing Care Center

Typically, our specialist, Dr. Samadi, can diagnose Ankyloglossia with a comprehensive physical examination. For infants, a specialized screening tool may be employed to assess the tongue’s appearance and its range of movement.

Is Treatment Necessary?

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to Tongue Tie. Some medical professionals might suggest early intervention, sometimes even before a newborn leaves the hospital. Conversely, others might advocate a “wait and watch” strategy, anticipating the lingual frenulum might relax as the child matures.

At ENT, Sinus & Hearing Care Center, we’re conscious of the potential medical expenses and emotional toll of surgeries. Hence, our general recommendation is to monitor the situation. Should the condition not self-resolve and begins to impede a child’s speaking or eating abilities, surgical intervention becomes a consideration.

Treatment Options

The most commonly recommended surgical procedure for Ankyloglossia is the frenotomy. Here, a surgeon will snip the restrictive frenulum using sterilized scissors. Given the limited nerve endings in this region, the procedure is swift and typically involves minimal discomfort.

When Should You Seek Help?

If you notice restricted tongue movements in your child or if they face difficulties eating or speaking, it’s time to consult a specialist. ENT, Sinus & Hearing Care Center is here to provide expert advice, accurate diagnosis, and effective treatment options tailored to individual needs. Schedule an appointment with us today to explore the best way forward for your child’s health.