A frenectomy is a surgical procedure that uses a laser to sever the frenum, small pieces of skin between the lips, gums or tongue. Commonly diagnosed in children, the need for a frenectomy is usually prescribed for those experiencing difficulties eating or speaking. It can also be needed to close spaces between teeth.
There are two types of frenum:
Lingual Frenum – The lingual frenum is the tissue that connects the tongue to the floor of the mouth. If this piece of tissue connects too far up on the tongue, it can restrict tongue movement. This is known as being ‘tongue-tied.’ Sometimes this problem can cause issues with a child’s speech and eating abilities. A frenectomy can improve the appetite and eating abilities of the child, and speech functions.
Labial Frenum – The labial frenum is the tissue connecting the upper lip to the gums (between the two front teeth). If this tissue is too far down on the gums, it can result in a sizable gap between the front teeth, and if it’s too tight, it can cause gum recession. In this case, a frenectomy can allow orthodontia to eliminate the gap between the front two teeth (increasing self-confidence), reduce or eliminate pain and discomfort, and improve the bite function.
We can diagnose the need for and perform frenectomies in our office.