At Dental Solutions of Columbus, we’re proud that our office includes a certified oral surgeon, Dr. Hostalet. This means that when oral surgery is on the table, we don’t need to refer you to another practice – you can have the procedure under our same roof! Today, we want to talk about a common oral surgery for treating tongue-tie or lip-tie: a frenectomy.
How Do I Know If I Need a Frenectomy?
If you’re never heard of a frenectomy, you’re not alone. This procedure is most commonly performed on babies who have issues feeding or with speech. However, we sometimes recommend a frenectomy for adults to treat gum recession, oral pain, or gaps between teeth.
What Is a Frenectomy?
To explain a frenectomy procedure, we first need to cover some vocabulary. A frenum (also called frenulum) is a band of connective tissue joining two areas. In your mouth, frena (the plural of frenum) join your tongue to the floor of your mouth and your lips to your gums. When a frenum is too short or tight, it can lead to problems with speech and oral health. In babies, a short or tight frenum can cause problems with breastfeeding and swallowing.
How Long Does It Take to Recover from a Frenectomy?
Your recovery time after a frenectomy depends on your age, your oral health, and the extent of the procedure. Infants and babies generally recover quickly and can resume feeding right away. Adults generally recover in three to five days. You may need pain relievers to manage discomfort and to rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash to clean the surgical site. We generally schedule a follow-up appointment a week or two after the procedure to monitor healing.
What Can I Eat While Recovering from a Frenectomy?
Babies can resume breastfeeding right after a frenectomy, while adults should stick to liquids right after the procedure. You should eat soft foods like mashed potatoes, apple sauce and soups until you feel up for solid foods.