Teen Lip and Tongue-Ties – Chicago, IL

Improved Oral Function and Health for Teens

When you think of lip and tongue-ties, you likely associate these problems with infants or young children; however, they can affect teenagers too! In fact, a minor tongue-tie can be overlooked during early development, but then it can turn into a larger problem in teenage years. If you think you or your teen could have a lip or tongue-tie, a laser frenectomy in South Loop can help restore full flexibility and function. Call our office or request an appointment today for a better quality of life and increased confidence!

How a Teen Tongue-Tie Can Affect Speech

smiling teen after getting a laser frenectomy in South Loop (for intro paragraph)

Your lips and tongue are crucial for articulating sounds, but if they are restricted or excessively tight, speech impediments can complicate communication. For instance, forming hard Rs as well as other critical sounds can be particularly challenging with a tongue-tie. Sometimes, a tongue-tie can cause a significant lisp. In addition to being difficult and frustrating, these speech troubles can create embarrassment for teens, especially when talking in front of peers.

How a Teen Tongue-Tie Can Affect Eating and Swallowing

smiling teen girl who has clear speech after a laser frenectomy in South Loop

You may be wondering how you or your teen could have come to this point in life without addressing a tongue-tie sooner. As an infant, you may not have struggled very much to breast or bottle-feed, but you can still have a lip or tongue-tie as a teen. Your tongue influences how your food is moved around in your mouth for chewing and swallowing and can therefore cause trouble. Difficulty chewing or swallowing, jaw pain, shoulder and neck pain, a significant gag reflex with certain food textures, or headaches are all common symptoms for those who have a tongue-tie as a teen. Problems using a straw and swallowing in general are also clear signs that you should be evaluated.

Benefits of Laser Frenectomy Treatment

teen who doesn’t have trouble with a straw after a laser frenectomy in South Loop

Traditionally, lip and tongue-ties treatment consists of a surgical procedure called a frenectomy with a sharp scalpel. Basically, the restrictive tissue is cut to increase flexibility and mobility, but sutures are often needed. Today, our dentists utilize state-of-the-art laser technology to streamline the entire process and make it more comfortable. The highly concentrated light laser gently severs the soft tissue with very little bleeding or discomfort. In fact, local anesthesia is often not necessary! Although additional therapy may be needed for you or your teen to retrain the newly freed tongue, this laser treatment involves a speedy recovery and provides instant improvement in mobility and function.