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Exposing the Beast: Lip and Tongue Tie

Posted by on Dec. 30, 2013 at 2:36 PM
  • 21 Replies
1 mom liked this

Exposing The Beast: Lip and Tongue-Tie in Our Children

photo(24)By Krystle K

I would like to shed some light on “the beast” that is known as undiagnosed
lip and tongue-ties. I call it “the beast” because it is a force to be
reckoned with on many levels.

Not just unknown amongst the general public, but even many healthcare
professionals are unaware of what lip and tongue-ties are and their
possible implications.

I know these implications first-hand and have documented our journey
through the muddy waters of lip and tongue-ties.

photo(7)

Lip and tongue-ties are midline defects. This defect is present if one or
both of the frenulums, the connective tissue that is located under the
tongue and in the underside of the upper lip, are extremely “tight” and
restrictive. This can cause many problems such as latch and speech issues,photo(14)
difficulty swallowing and digesting foods, tooth decay, TMJ, headaches and
much more.

I used to think the term “tongue-tied” was just a saying, but I have since
learned IT IS A VERY REAL THING! For us, it all started one morning while
perusing Facebook. I saw an article on lip and tongue-ties, and out of
curiousity I checked it out. I can honestly say Facebook changed my life
that day. Once I read about the correlation between lip and tongue-ties to
breastfeeding issues, I had a sneaking suspicion… I lifted my 4-month-old
daughter’s upper lip and gasped – A LIP TIE! I immediately lifted her
tongue – A TONGUE TIE! Off I ran to grab my 18-month-old; also lip and
tongue-tied!

I cannot explain to you how relieved I was. After experiencing every kind
of road block with breastfeeding – cracked, chaffed and bleeding nipples,
thrush, mastitis, clogged ducts, low supply and babies with reflux, colic
and latch problems – I FINALLY had an answer. My eldest daughter weaned at
6 months and it absolutely gutted me. The timing of my diagnosis was
perfection; my second daughter was having all of the same issues I
mentioned above. She was beginning to fight at the breast, crying while
trying to latch and having all sorts of troubles with gas and reflux.
“Breastfeeding shouldn’t be THIS hard” I would sob as we battled yet
another awful round of thrush or mastitis. I was at my wit’s end calling La
Leche Leauge, searching online groups, and eliminating as much as I could
from my diet. I was reaching out for any and all help I could find to try
and get on the right track to enjoying the blissful breastfeeding
relationship I had envisioned. So I’m sure you can understand why I was
doing my “lip and tongue-tie dance” around my kitchen. An answer, finally
an answer!

photo(16)As I continued to research, I found that their lip and tongue-ties affected
both of their abilities to latch, causing them to take in air, which led to
gas and reflux, which led to “colic.” And on and on it goes… Because of
their inability to latch properly, they were not emptying the breast which
manifested into multiple rounds of clogged ducts, mastitis, and thrush. SO
not fun.

As relieved as I was, I was also slightly annoyed that I could recognize
this so easily once I’d seen an example, yet my pediatrician had even
looked in my children’s mouths multiple times and missed it. How could he
miss this? I was told reflux was normal and my babies were lazy nursers.
What surprised me most was the resistance I encountered when trying to get
professionals to acknowledge or agree with this diagnosis. I was told by
pediatricians, ENTs and dentists that lip and tongue ties did not affect
breastfeeding. They were not only dismissive but would laugh as if I were
talking about mythical creatures.

This is where my mission became clear. I was going to have to do my own
research, decide what was best for my family and make an informed decision
without the support of the professionals. I got plugged into a great
support group and knew a revision (otherwise known as a frenectony) was the
right move for both of my children.

3 things are key to having a successful frenectomy:photo(25)
1. Choosing the right provider who is experienced with revisions and
understands this
diagnosis
2. Using a laser and not having it clipped with surgical scissors
3. Performing aftercare “body work” to help relieve the tension and keep
the frenulum from
reattaching. This includes stretching the site and getting
chiropractic or craniosacral
therapy.

I experienced AMAZING results following my daughters’ revisions: we never
dealt with thrush, mastitis, reflux or any of our issues from that day
forth. Additionally, both girls’ two front teeth (which had considerable
gaps) drifted back together, speech was improved and BEST of all — my
(now 2-year-old daughter) began breastfeeding again for the first time
since she weaned at 6 months of age! IM NOT KIDDING! A few days after the
revision she asked if she could “have boobie too?” and I almost fell off my
chair. I have often asked her over the last year if she would like to nurse
again and she always told me “no.” To my surprise she latched on perfectly
and has been tandem nursing with her younger sister since. I asked what she
thought about having the ”boobie” again and she replied: “it makes me
happy.”
Pretty awesome ending if I do say so myself.

LINK

by on Dec. 30, 2013 at 2:36 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Azure
by Representative on Dec. 31, 2013 at 9:37 AM

bump

dlane12152007
by on Dec. 31, 2013 at 10:10 AM
Ugh I should of googled pics of these before, but was told everything was fine. I'm pretty sure my son has the lip tie. I'm going to try to get a pic when he's cooperating and post on here but it looks like the before pic in that first series of pics you have labeled before, after, 1 week. So definitely going to say that's probaly why he wasn't latching properly or opening wide enough to latch and only getting nipple. Feel kind of bad now that I gave up bfing, and didn't check myself to see if it looked tied instead of just going off of what they said and believing everything was fine. I can't tell if his tongue is tied too but pretty confident the lip is.
dlane12152007
by on Dec. 31, 2013 at 10:24 AM

Mobile Photo

Does it look tied? I couldn't get a great pic.
Gonzo318
by Rachelle on Dec. 31, 2013 at 10:29 AM

Mobile Photo

I'm wondering if Cole's lip is tied too? He's latching and nursing fine but it does hurt a little and he can't latch on his own I kind of have to hold myself in place for him .. Thoughts?
mrs.hartman12
by on Dec. 31, 2013 at 10:56 AM

My dd2 is lip tied but we were able to nurse through it. Depending on your Ped you can choose to get it clipped or leave it alone. Now her tongue tie we had to get fixed because it was effecting her ability to nurse. 

Quoting Gonzo318:

Mobile Photo

I'm wondering if Cole's lip is tied too? He's latching and nursing fine but it does hurt a little and he can't latch on his own I kind of have to hold myself in place for him .. Thoughts?


Gonzo318
by Rachelle on Dec. 31, 2013 at 10:58 AM
I have his 2 week check next week so I'll have to talk to his ped. He's nursing.. It's not the easiest thing ever, like I said I have to kind of hold myself in place for him but that might not have anything to do with the lip tie.

Quoting mrs.hartman12:

My dd2 is lip tied but we were able to nurse through it. Depending on your Ped you can choose to get it clipped or leave it alone. Now her tongue tie we had to get fixed because it was effecting her ability to nurse. 

Quoting Gonzo318:

Mobile Photo

I'm wondering if Cole's lip is tied too? He's latching and nursing fine but it does hurt a little and he can't latch on his own I kind of have to hold myself in place for him .. Thoughts?


mrs.hartman12
by on Dec. 31, 2013 at 11:01 AM

Yeah Victoria is almost 4 weeks old, and I still have to hold it for her and she has no tie at all. Thank goodness for that!

Quoting Gonzo318: I have his 2 week check next week so I'll have to talk to his ped. He's nursing.. It's not the easiest thing ever, like I said I have to kind of hold myself in place for him but that might not have anything to do with the lip tie.

Quoting mrs.hartman12:

My dd2 is lip tied but we were able to nurse through it. Depending on your Ped you can choose to get it clipped or leave it alone. Now her tongue tie we had to get fixed because it was effecting her ability to nurse. 

Quoting Gonzo318:

Mobile Photo

I'm wondering if Cole's lip is tied too? He's latching and nursing fine but it does hurt a little and he can't latch on his own I kind of have to hold myself in place for him .. Thoughts?



dlane12152007
by on Dec. 31, 2013 at 2:51 PM
Does he latch good with his top lip? I didn't really notice until I quit bfing and switched to bottle that he doesn't flare his upper lip out he pulls it in. I have to pull it out several times during each feeding.

Quoting Gonzo318:

Mobile Photo

I'm wondering if Cole's lip is tied too? He's latching and nursing fine but it does hurt a little and he can't latch on his own I kind of have to hold myself in place for him .. Thoughts?
Sugadive
by on Dec. 31, 2013 at 3:56 PM
My daughter had it so bad she couldn't stick her tongue out at all :( we got it cut at 2 weeks old.
Gonzo318
by Rachelle on Dec. 31, 2013 at 4:29 PM
Usually he does ok but I have to pull his top lip out sometimes

Quoting dlane12152007: Does he latch good with his top lip? I didn't really notice until I quit bfing and switched to bottle that he doesn't flare his upper lip out he pulls it in. I have to pull it out several times during each feeding.



Quoting Gonzo318:

Mobile Photo

I'm wondering if Cole's lip is tied too? He's latching and nursing fine but it does hurt a little and he can't latch on his own I kind of have to hold myself in place for him .. Thoughts?
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