Having a baby is a beautiful, but scary thing. First time parents are usually beyond excited, but somewhat apprehensive as they wade into uncharted waters. Of course, most rely on books, friends and family who have gone before them to navigate the waters, but the ultimate reality is that parenting is a lesson in trial and error. This may seem easy enough to some, but for new parents it seems like they are climbing a mountain each day.
Infants actually require very little beyond their basic needs. Keeping them dry, warm and fed. Unfortunately, all of these areas can cause significant stress, especially when it comes to feeding. Some mothers can’t produce enough milk or their baby has difficulty latching on. Many times this issue works itself out but sometimes babies can’t latch due to a condition called ankyloglossia, or tongue-tied. Having a tongue-tied child is actually quite common and many times under-diagnosed. Ankyloglossia occurs when a connecting piece of skin under the tongue called a frenulum is either too short or extends too far forward, making it difficult for the tongue to extend for feeding. Trying to breastfeed a tongue-tied infant can be extremely painful and frustrating. The good news, it’s an easy and relatively painless fix. Children’s Dentistry has had huge success snipping the frenulum. This procedure is simple and noninvasive. Tongue-tied newborns often latch successfully and nurse immediately following the procedure, it’s truly amazing to witness.
If you’re a new parent and your infant is having a difficult time feeding, it might be worth bringing your infant in for a complimentary exam to determine whether your child is tongue tied. Please feel free to call or email our Children’s Dentistry doctors with any questions you might have, we are your partners in health through this crazy journey called parenting.