Yes and it has a HUGE effect on your health, from infant to adults. The mouth is the portal to the body and the beginning of the digestive system. Your digestive system is made up of tubes and valves (summarizing), if the start of your system is restricted and the tongue and lips cannot move like they are made to do it will create chaos in your whole system. Increasing gas, digestive issues, GERD, belching to name a few.
What exactly is a Tongue Tie?
The tongue is made of multiple muscles, classifying it as an organ more then a muscle. The muscles move the tongue up, down, side to side to assist your body in chewing, swallowing, speaking, and cleansing your mouth. Your tongue is attached to the bottom of your mouth by connective tissue, if this is short or attached more toward the back of the tongue (posterior, these are more difficult for providers to identify) the tissue anchoring the tongue is also restricting the movement of the tongue.
Lip and cheeks can be tied also. This will restrict you from creating a proper suction. Infants with breastfeeding latch challenges need to have these looked at to help them with proper feeding. If you are having your tongue evaluated ask your provider about these areas too!
I don’t know if I am tongue tied, but I have a lot of symptoms. Where do I start? I offer free 30 minute consultation to help identify if this is the right therapy for you!
TREATING A TONGUE-TIE IS SIMPLE WHEN YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TEAM!
As a Myofunctional therapist I have been trained to identify the correct and proper function of the tongue. Many providers are unaware to properly evaluate tongue restriction since it is not part of dental (hygiene) curriculum. This is where I collaborate with the referring provider to confirm and assist in pre- and post op care of the tongue since the movement and function will be foreign.
HOW THERAPY WORKS FOR TONGUE-TIE?
1. PRE-OP EXERCIES
This is critical part of success, Myofunctional therapist will prescribe exercise to strengthen and prepare the muscles of the tongue for the new range of motion.
Minor surgical removal of the band holding down the tongue, called frenectomy or frenulectomy. It’s simple fast, painless, quick procedure done by scalpel or laser. Finding an experienced doctor to perform this is key!
3. WOUND CARE
The mouth is a quick healer. Keeping the area from infection is important to success. If the wound is not properly managed the tongue can reattach back to the way it was before.
4. MYOFUNCTIONAL THERAPY
New movement of the tongue needs to be rehabilitated and strengthened after the release. The tongue and facial muscles need to be retrained to function properly. Myofunctional therapy is required, just like physical therapy only for the mouth.