baby with tongue tie

Chances are if you’ve stammered through a conversation, stuttered through a sentence, or couldn’t quite pronounce a word or phrase correctly, you’ve called yourself tongue tied. But there’s more to being tongue tied than not getting your words out properly (although that can be part of it). Tongue tie can actually be the cause of many health problems.

What is a Tongue Tie?

Without going into too much detail, a tongue tie starts at birth and is when a strong membrane in the mouth–the frenum–attaches the tongue to the floor of the mouth. As you might imagine, this can cause some restricted movements of the tongue, which in turn can cause some health problems. There are several health issues that could arise due to this issue, such as:

  • Restricted airflow
  • Facial development
  • Sleep apnea
  • Mouth breathing
  • Breast/bottle feeding

As an infant, many of these problems can have a profound effect on the child’s development and growth, not to mention comfort. So how can you know if these are issues you or your child is facing? Pay attention to the symptoms of tongue tie, including:

  • Snoring
  • Speaking with a lisp
  • Clenching/grinding teeth
  • Dry lips
  • Troubles swallowing
  • Overly tired during the day
  • A heart-shaped tip of the tongue

These symptoms can alert you to potential problems you might not even be aware of. And it’s not just for infants or children; even adults can be suffering from tongue tie, which could even account for back and shoulder pain, among other issues. For such a small muscle, the frenum can certainly cause a lot of problems. If you are experiencing health issues–even minor ones–don’t shrug it off as something you can deal with. Likewise, children may experience pain from this issue, but because it is something they’re used to, they may simply be dealing with a life of pain.

If you or your child is experiencing any of the above symptoms, or if you think tongue tie could be an issue, contact Fair Lakes today at (804) 323-4200 or by scheduling an appointment online.