Otherwise known as lingual frenulum or ankyloglossia, it is defined by the International Affiliation of Tongue-Tied Professionals as “an embryologic remnant of tissue in the midline between the undersurface of the tongue and the floor of the mouth that restricts normal movement” (Baxter 2018). Hence, by definition, it is restricting normal movement. Any change in normal movement may change muscle function, form compensations and change tongue/mouth resting position.
Full range of tongue movement is necessary for functional eating, drinking, and speech. Appropriate resting tongue posture is important for optimal breathing, dental occlusion and health.
A tongue tie keeps the tongue in a down position with restricted movement. This may affect:
- reduced ability to nurse efficiently possibly causing nursing pain, lip blisters, poor weight gain, reflux, increased gas, reduced milk supply, mastitis
- reduced ability to move the food around your mouth for eating, chewing and swallowing possibly causing gagging, choking, reduced food repertoire, picky eating
- reduced tongue movement for sound production and precision for reduced intelligibility
- alter shape of face and mouth growth
- reduced jaw stability and pain
- alter the shape and growth of the dental arch and teeth
- open mouth posture , forward head posture, poor body posture
- nasal breathing and airway obstruction
The optimal time of release (frenectomy) is key in the impact on therapy. The client needs to be able to follow post surgical exercises and therapy after a frenectomy. Happy to work with your dentist and send a summary of the evaluation findings. Use of facial muscles, tongue movement and swallow precision, suck swallow breathe (nursing babies) need to be evaluated. Orofacial myology treatment can encompass these goals. Craniosacral therapy supports nerve and muscle function promoting orofacial myology goals.