At What Age Does a Child Need a Frenectomy?

At What Age Does a Child Need a Frenectomy?

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Age that a Child Needs a Frenectomy
©Gerard Koudenburg/Shutterstock.com

One of the topics that I get emailed about most often is labial frenectomies.  Not long ago, my sister called me asking me whether or not her daughter should get a labial frenectomy.  The dentist had noticed it at one appointment and said that she may have a gap between her front teeth if a frenectomy wasn’t done.

My sister never got back to the dentist.  At the following appointment, the dentist never mentioned that her daughter needed a frenectomy.

Overall, it seems like orthodontists and general dentists are recommending frenectomies more and more often. Is there a sound reason for performing all of these recommended frenectomies?  Should little children get frenectomies to avoid possibly having a gap between their front permanent teeth?  I’ll answer these questions and more in the article below.

At What Age Should a Child Get a Labial Frenectomy?

At What Age Does a Child Need a Labial Frenectomy?

A few months ago, I had a conversation via email with a reader who we’ll call Amy.  Her daughter was only 16 months old and the doctor that she went to recommended that her 16 month old daughter get a labial frenectomy.  Here’s what Amy wrote in one of her emails to me:

Our doctor told us that her gum needed to be cut at some point before her back teeth came in and before the permanent teeth came in to help with the space.  She has not had any problems with it before like pain or trouble talking. To make the story different to me, is that the doctor that did the surgery was a ear, nose and throat doctor. I always had a dentist do the work on me.

I am not sure if this has anything to do with it but we live in a very small town and area. I have talked to many people and they all acted like this was a common thing to do even on toddlers and infants. So I am a little confused with their responses and yours.

I found Amy’s email slightly troubling as I hadn’t ever heard of frenectomies being performed in such young children unless their frenum is so thick that they have trouble eating/speaking or it is causing them pain.

After combing through a few different textbooks, I found a few quotes that I think are worth sharing.  Dr. Pinkham’s book Pediatric Dentistry states the following (I put the important points in bold text – and FYI a diastema is a space between the front teeth):

“Recent trends justify significantly fewer maxillary labial frenectomies.  These procedures should only be performed after it has been shown that the frenum is a causative factor in maintaining a diastema between the maxillary central incisors.  This cannot be determined until after the permanent canines have erupted.  Therefore a maxillary labial frenectomy prior to the age of 11 or 12 is probably not indicated.”

The book Paediatric Dentistry, edited by Richard Welbury echoes Dr. Pinkham’s pediatric dentistry book.  It says, “Parents are often concerned about spacing of the upper incisors, and they can be reassured that it will often reduce as the permanent upper canines erupt…There is some disagreement about the role of frenectomy in the treatment of diastemata, but it is very rarely indicated in the mixed dentition stage and is probably best carried out during active orthodontic treatment.”

Dr. Pinkham’s book states that a frenectomy is probably unnecessary before a child is 11 or 12 years old.  Paediatric Dentistry says that a frenectomy is very rarely done in the mixed dentition (before all of the baby teeth have fallen out – around 11-12 years of age.)

Both of these authoritative books in the field of pediatric dentistry agree that a frenectomy shouldn’t be done, except in rare circumstances, before a child is 11 years old.

Labial Frenectomy After Braces

A labial frenectomy can be done after the gap between the front teeth is closed with braces.  To learn more about this topic, read the article Is a Labial Frenectomy Necessary After Braces?

When Should a Child Get a Frenectomy Before They are 11 Years Old?

There may be some situations where a frenectomy should be performed in a child who is younger than the 11 to 12 years old recommended above.

The book Carranza’s Clinical Periodontology says that “A frenum becomes a problem if the attachment is too close to the marginal gingiva.  Tension on the frenum may pull the gingival margin away from the tooth.  This condition may be conducive to plaque accumulation and inhibit proper toothbrushing.”

The book Pediatric Dentistry also states that if “the frenum attachment exerts a traumatic force on the facial attached gingiva of a permanent tooth (an uncommon situation)” then a frenectomy can also be performed.

Obviously, other valid reasons to perform a labial frenectomy earlier are if the frenum is causing the child pain or making it difficult to speak or eat.

Conclusion

To recap, a child should only get a frenectomy after the permanent canines have come in and after closing the gap between the front two teeth.  This means that a frenectomy should normally only be performed when a child has turned 11 or 12 years old.

A child may need to get a frenectomy earlier if the labial frenum:

  • Makes it difficult for the child to keep their teeth clean
  • Is pulling on the gums causing them to recede
  • Causes the child pain
  • Makes it difficult for the child to eat or speak

Have you had your children get labial frenectomies?  Has your child’s dentist recommended a labial frenectomy before the age of 11?

I’d love to hear about your stories involving frenectomies in the comments section below.  Thanks for reading!

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86 COMMENTS

  1. I thought I would add one more reference from the textbook Dentistry for the Child & Adolescent. It says that a frenectomy or frenotomy can be done with “A high maxillary frenum and an associated midline diastema that persists after complete eruption of the permanent canines.”

    This reinforces that a frenectomy should only be done to correct a gap between the two front teeth if the gap is still there after the permanent canines have come in, which is around age 11.

  2. Our daughter, age 5, was scheduled for a labial frenectomy but it was causing such distress for her (fear of the surgery) that I decided to check it out a bit more before going through with the procedure. She does have a large gap between her baby teeth, and there is a bit of skin on the gumline, between the two front teeth. So that is why I didn’t question it in the first consultation with the oral surgeon.

    However, after reading your information along with other information online, and after having a conversation with an orthodontist, we have decided not to do the frenectomy and instead wait to see how her permanent teeth come in.

    The surgery would cost us $500 and isn’t covered by our health or dental insurance. If I felt the surgery was absolutely necessary, I’d do it. But it seems more “cosmetic” than anything. I have lived my whole life with a small gap between my front teeth, and it hasn’t cause any problems. If this surgery is just to avoid a slightly “imperfect” smile, then I think it’s very unnecessary. If we find that a gap causes problems with my daughter’s bite or causes headaches, of course we’ll take care of it. But it seems there is no guaranteed result with this surgery, and some potential for pain. The orthodontist pointed out that if she has a bad dental experience at this age, it could make routine dental visits very difficult for her.

    So thank you for taking time to have this site! I appreciate the information.

    • Hi Vicki – Thanks for your kind words – it’s comments like yours that keep me writing!

      Thank you so much for sharing your experience so that other people can see what ended up working out for you and your daughter. When working with kids it is important for us to take into account how the experience will affect their overall view of the dentist. I’ve worked with a lot of adults who simply don’t go to the dentist anymore because they had a bad experience as a kid. Hopefully your daughter will continue to have positive experiences at the dentist. Thanks for your comment, Vicki!

      • This week, my daughter accidentally got kicked in the mouth, and damaged her 2 front baby teeth. She had to have both teeth extracted, so she had the frenectomy done at the same time!

        • Hi Vicki – I’m glad everything worked out well, even though she had an unfortunate accident. Thanks for keeping us updated!

  3. I appreciate the information you have provided on your website. My husband took my 6 year old daughter to the dentist today and are making an appointment to have this procedure done. I am not sure about it after reading your site. She has a pretty decent gap in her front teeth but if there is a chance this could fix itself I don’t want to put her through any unnecessary procedures. She tends to be a bit scared of those things anyway. Her bottom two teeth are the only baby teeth she has lost so I think I will definitely be doing more research on this and probably decline to have it done. Thanks again!

    • Hi Matissa – I’m glad the article helped – Hopefully your daughter’s gap will close on its own (many do) and she won’t end up needing a frenectomy. Thanks for your comment!

  4. Hi!

    I was told by my lactation consultant that the reason my baby can’t latch on to breastfeed is because he has an upper labial frenum, and I should have this skin removed. Should a 3 month old have this procedure done? Our ENT said the same thing. What should we do?

    • Hi Annamaria – I have heard of lingual frenectomies being done on infants as young as a few days because they were unable to latch on. I assume that a labial frenum could have the same effect of not allowing a baby to suck properly.

      If your ENT and lactation consultant both think that your baby needs it, then I would say that it’s probably a good idea to get it done. I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any other questions, Annamaria. Thanks for your comment!

    • Annamaria- Did you have the procedure done? Did it improve baby’s latch? I have it scheduled for my son on August 9th. He’ll be 11 weeks old. We have had CONSIDERABLE trouble with breastfeeding and finally deemed the frenum as the cause. The dentist recommended we move forward with the procedure but also said results are “inconclusive” in regards to improving latch and lessening pain for the mother. I am anxious to hear how it worked out for you and your little one!

      • Hi Becky – Sorry I didn’t get back to you earlier – I was taking finals last week.

        I sent Anamaria an email with a link to your comment. Hopefully she’ll be able to provide some insight for you. Thanks for your comment!

      • We did not have it done… The ENT we recently saw felt that it was unnecessary… We only had a frenulectomy on his tongue done. That’s removing the tiny skin that connects the tongue to the bottom roof of the mouth in some babies. Now he can move his tongue freely. Never latched, but we get donor breastmilk, so it worked out.

  5. I should have had a frenectomy as a young child, but parents thought large gap was cute ! Not so….. I was teased all my life about the space. Finally, as an adult , I had the surgery done and had to have crowns put over my permanent two front teeth to fill the gap. I never smiled for a picture until I had this done at age 24. Sad….could have been avoided with the surgery when I was a child.

    • Hi Kay – Thanks for sharing your experience. Some people like having the gap, even when it can be fixed. I’m glad you got what you wanted eventually and can now be proud of your smile!

  6. Im 16, and my dad wont sign to let me get a frenectomy, ive already had braces, my teeth are straight, and I don’t have a gap anymore. There’s a little ugly tiny piece that hangs down now right in between my two front teeth. I do have a splint rainter, thus this has been irritating it. My dentist has wanted to do a labial frenectomy for awhile now, but my dad doesn’t approve of anything having to do with “knives on skin for appearance”. what do i do? live with the irritation till im 18? And, Tom, I love these articles:D

    • Hi Sharon – I’m sorry your dad won’t allow you to get the frenectomy, it sounds like it’s something you really need. Is there any way to change his mind? If the excess tissue is really irritated, you could show your dad what’s happening and you might get him to sign off on the frenectomy. I wish I could be of more help. Hang in there, Sharon!

      Thanks for letting me know the articles have helped you – it gives me that extra motivation I need to keep writing :-)

      Let me know if you have any other questions.

  7. I am having trouble deciding what to do with my four year old. She has a good size gap between her baby teeth and I would like to do the frenectomy. Not because of her looks but because I would rather take care of it now then wait and see what happens. If we don’t have to risk her permanent teeth coming in with a gap or risk having to pay for braces, then I say get it over with. My husband had to have this procedure done also when he was in elementary school and remembers it hurting. I just think why not get it done with before it affects anything??

    • Hi Stacy – That might end up working out fine. Some experts believe that the scar tissue that forms could make it so that there’s always a gap between the front teeth. I usually will take the conservative approach and wait for the permanent canines to come in.

      I hope that helps – Thanks for your comment, Stacy. Let me know if you have any other questions.

  8. My 14 month old daughter has the skin from her lip attached all the way down to the bottom of the gum. This skin makes it very difficult to brush her teeth as the skin makes it hard to reach the top of her two top teeth effectively. Often the skin starts to bleed, even though I am gentle. Where can I go for advice. Thank you

    • Hi Anita – Pediatric dentists recommend taking your daughter to the dentist for the first time between the ages of 6 months and 1 year. I would have your daughter examined by a pediatric dentist to see if they recommend doing anything to allow you to be able to brush her teeth without any problems.

      I hope that helps – Thanks for your comment, Anita. Let me know if you have any other questions.

    • glad to hear that i’m not alone in this boat:-( my 13 month old has developed a viral mouth infection & mouth sores, thats the only time my gp had found out that he has an attachment on the inside of his upper lip that goes way down to his front teeth. he has advised that it would be best to have it cut, as it will affect my babys speech later on. I’m so scared about the whole thing & dont know if ca put my baby through the pain. But i also dont want anything to affect his natural development. please help!!

      • Catherine,

        A lip-tie can cause speech problems, your dentist is correct. It won’t always cause one, but it certainly can.

        If he or she is 25 pounds, then nitrous (laughing gas) can be used safely to make the visit enjoyable for your child when having the procedure done. And find a laser dentist to do the procedure, as healing will be faster and less discomfort afterwards. I recently performed this procedure on a 16 month old, and the mother told me their kid was running all around the house later that day.

        I will posting some before and after pics on my website soon, showing how fast healing occurs and how non-invasive the procedure really is.

        Dr. Brian

  9. Found this as I was doing some research on whether or not to do a frenectomy on my 6 year old daughter. She had her check up yesterday and the dentist recommend she get one as soon as possible before her two front teeth start growing in. (The front baby teeth are loose right now.) The dentist seemed concerned that the permanent teeth on either side of her front teeth will not have enough room when it’s time for them to shed and grow in and that she will have a large space between her permanent front teeth. She does have a considerable space between her baby teeth but I’m really hesitant to get this done if it’s purely for cosmetic reasons. On the other hand, I have no idea if it’s true that her other teeth won’t have room to grow in. I’m wondering if I can let all the permanent teeth start coming in and if problems do crop up later with spacing, if we can do something about it then?

    • Hi Brooke – From what I’ve read, it’s usually best to leave it alone. My front teeth had a gap so wide that I could fit a nickel between them (I tried weird things as a kid, I guess!) Eventually, after the canine teeth came in, the front two teeth were pushed together and the gap was nearly gone. I only needed a retainer (no frenectomy) to finish closing the gap.

      If there are problems with spacing, these can usually be corrected with braces. One problem that many experts have said is that by doing the frenectomy so early, scar tissue can form where the frenum was and make it so that the gap is very difficult to close. You may want to get a second opinion or even ask your dentist about the research that supports doing a frenectomy so early. After researching it quite a bit, it seems that most people recommend waiting to get a frenectomy until the permanent canines come in (that’s what is recommended by the pediatric dentistry dept. at my dental school.)

      I hope that helps – let me know if you have any more questions, Brooke.

  10. Hi Tom,

    Yesterday my 6 year daughter was told by her dentist she needs to have a frenectomy. Her permanent front two teeth have come through recently and there is a big gap. The dentist sent her this morning for an x-ray to see how her other second teeth are coming through but he is concerned about lack of space, that the gap is going to cause space issues for the other teeth on either side. He mentioned to me that my daughter when she swallows pushes her tongue forward rather than back which apparently is an issue, plus he mentioned she also must have some trouble pronounciating some words and speak with a bit of a lisp but this is not the case, it definitely has not effected her speech in any way. When you mention perhaps waiting to have a frenectomy until the permanent teeth are through, do you mean all the permanent teeth or just the front two? Will wait to see what the x-ray shows but would really appreciate you thoughts regarding this situation. Many thanks

    • Hi Vanessa – What we were taught in dental school (and what is confirmed by the textbooks that I cited in this article) is that a frenectomy should be performed only after the front six permanent teeth have come in. Many times the canine teeth will push the front four teeth together, getting rid of the gap. With that in mind, your dentist knows your daughter’s situation better than me. If you are concerned, you may want to get a second opinion.

      I hope that helps – Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks for your comment, Vanessa.

  11. I am so relieved after reading the information on this website! My cousins baby boy had a frenectomy because of a gap in his two front teeth. My daughter will be 2 in December and I’ve had people remark about her gap. But I have never wanted to put her through the surgery unless I thought it was absolutely necessary. She doesn’t seem to have any pain or trouble eating and she’s learning to talk very well. I will definitely wait to see how her permanent teeth come in. I would rather she get braces when she’s 12 or 13 than a pointless surgery now that could make the gap worse (scar tissue) in the long run.

    Thank you for the sigh of relief!!!

  12. I’m glad I found this article. My 7 year old went to the dentist at the beginning of September. When she was there in April, the dentist had told us that our daughter will most likely need braces when she grows up due to severe spacing issues we could clearly see as she began to lose baby teeth and saw permanent teeth growing in almost sideways due to lack of space. This is present on both teeth that are on the bottom as well as teeth on the top of her mouth. At the appointment last month though, the dentist pointed out again her need for braces and then stated that my daughter would need to have this surgery done. I had never heard of such a thing. She never had a gap in her teeth when she only had baby teeth, prior to her permanent teeth growing in. Of course, her permanent teeth are much larger than the baby teeth, which explains the lack of space for them to rest comfortably in her mouth.

    It was quite a production finding a dentist that even performs this surgery in our state. So, it’s hard for me to get a second opinion. Anyway, why does this procedure seem to be so uncommon in New England? Will it really help? Will it hurt anything to wait until she is 11 or 12? I had a small gap in my teeth until I was 13 years old. What do you make of this??? I don’t know what to do…

  13. I am just in the researching phase of frenectomies. My son will be four in February, and I am concerned about speech issues. To be honest, I had never even considered the impact it may have on his teeth in the future. He is slowing slight signs of speech trouble because he is so tongue-tied. I absolutely do not want to put him through unnecessary procedures, especially prematurely, but I am a little worried about him not having unimpeded speech development.

    Thank you so much for such an informative article on the subject!

  14. Hi Tom. My 14-month-old daughter has a severe labial frenum tie (extends to the hard palate) that I discovered just a few months ago. We had difficulty breast-feeding, and no one told me that this was a potential cause for our troubles until she was almost a year old (and still nursing, thankfully). The fact that neither our midwife or two pediatricians who had consulted on our nursing issues ever mentioned a labial tie sent me off to do some research and figure out what the heck is going on and what our best options are for future treatment.

    I have discovered two very different approaches, and wonder if you could comment. Perhaps not surprisingly, there is the wait-and-see approach (outlined above), and the fix-it-now approach, ideally using lasers instead of more “traditional” methods of oral surgery. Are you familiar with the work and research done by Dr. Lawrence Kotlow, and/or with the use of lasers to correct labial and lingual ties without the use of general anesthesia or even sutures? My daughter has a very large diastema between her two front teeth, and while I understand that some diastemas close with the eruption of the adult canines, given the severity of her labial tie I am inclined to think that hers will be an ongoing issue. I am also concerned about the potential for dental carries on her front teeth due to retention of material in the area, although we are able to brush them pretty well (we brush her teeth once a day, which is about all she will tolerate!).

    I have read the information above, and understand your recommendation to wait until the adult teeth come in before having corrective surgery. I guess my questions are: have you had any conversations with instructors or fellow dental students about the impact of labial and lingual ties on the success of breastfeeding, and if so, was there any consensus on treatment options for very young babies? That’s a bit after the fact for my daughter, but we plan to have more children. How common is the use of lasers in pediatric dentistry? Correcting a labial frenum tie can allow a diastema to close on it’s own, and may negate the need for orthodontics, but it’s impossible to know beforehand what the outcome of surgery will be. Is there any guideline or “rule of thumb” that relates the severity or type of labial tie to the extent (and possible closure of) a diastema? I would be hesitant to put my daughter under general anesthesia until she is much further along in her dental development, but I don’t see any downside to correcting her labial tie much sooner if I could find an expert in using the laser approach (vis-a-vis, Dr. Kotlow). Any comment on that?

    Many thanks for any feedback that you can provide!

    • Amanda, I am researching the same procedure for my 8-month-old infant and am wondering what other parents have concluded from their research. Where did you all land? The pediatric dentist we saw leans toward avoiding the procedure. Dr. Kotlow has classified my son as Class IV labial frenum and advised revision.

      I have the same concerns you have (or had).

      Thanks for your reply!
      Kristen

      • Hi Kristen. It seems that there are very few pediatric dentists who favor revision before the adult teeth erupt. My perception (and this could be wrong) is that most ped. dentists don’t have adequate experience with using lasers, and are probably afraid to work on babies. Two ped. dentists that I spoke with in my area (Oregon) recommended waiting. If there was a dentist in our area, even within a few hours, that was experienced with doing lingual and labial frenum revision using lasers I wouldn’t hesitate to have the procedure done immediately. The closest dentists that Dr. Kotlow recommended to me were in LA and Salt Lake City.

        It bugs me that few dentists are as proactive about this as Dr. Kotlow. Since this happened to us, I have talked with several mothers who had nursing issues due to tongue and labial ties, and there don’t seem to be any pediatric dentists around here who acknowledge the issue and are willing to help fix it.

        • I had my second son a week ago and was Becoming sore a couple days after his birth. I had nursing pain for four months with my first and now see that he and our second son have upper lip ties. We have an appointment for tomorrow at a dentist who is highly recommended and uses a laser. I was just curious what you found out/ did as I see Tom didn’t reply to your questions. I am torn about him being in any pain. :(

          • Hi Karrie – sorry – I just saw your comment. How did it go at the dentist? I would love to know. If we had had a dentist in our area that has extensive experience with handling lingual and labial tie corrections on infants using a laser, I would have corrected my daughter’s labial frenum tie (upper lip) as early as possible. The midwife clipped her tongue tie at 1 day old (with scissors, no blood and not so much as a peep from baby), and it helped with breastfeeding, but I think her labial tie, which is severe, also impeded her latch. Now that her teeth are in (with a huge gap), we have to be very careful to brush her front teeth well because material and plaque seem to gather there very easily.

            From what I understand, the use of lasers to fix these issues is very quick and results in very little pain. I think it’s not more commonly recommended because most pediatric dentists don’t have the experience in using lasers. I honestly don’t get what the downside is, and why “the books” don’t advise correction early on, especially when labial and lingual ties can impair breastfeeding (I’ve heard this from so many moms). Anyway – I hope it all worked out for you and your son.

            • The procedure went well. My husband held him because I was a post-partum mess basically. :) there was no bleeding and he cried more from being held still with his lip up. He nursed right after which made me feel better. The jury is still out on how much it helped my nursing pain, but I am hopeful!

            • I forgot tom mention that we saw one of the two dentists with a master certification in pediatric laser dentistry. I went to him because that’s who most people recommended, I didn’t realize that he was THE dentist to see around here. Apparently people from all over the country come to him for this procedure. Lucky for us he was about an hour away. Dr. Margolis in Buffalo Grove: http://www.kidsmyl.com/

        • Amanda – there is a n ENT at the Oregon Clinic who does lingual and labial frenotomies with a laser to correct poor nursing latch. His name is Bobak Ghaheri, MD – he just did the procedure for my 5 week old and we saw immediate, striking improvement.

  15. I am 21 and I just had a Frenectomy done yesterday. I had a very large gap before braces and after I got my braces off about six years ago I was supposed to have the procedure done but didn’t follow through for financial reasons. the frenum caused my teeth to shift because that tissue is so strong and I have had numerous retainers that i had to wear constantly because my teeth would shift almost immediately after taking the retainer out. Finally i got a permanent lingual retainer but the tension causes them to pop off. In addition to that its hard to clean and floss around a permanent retainer. I am now a dental assistant and as a professional courtesy the work was done after all these years I had no swelling and very minimal pain and it looks and feels so much better already! If I did not have it done I would have had recession in the near future. I recommend seeing a periodontist for the work since they are gum specialist. My daughter will eventually have to have the very same procedure done but I definitely don’t see a need until after braces because it doesn’t bother her. I am an advocate of frenectomies because it is not just esthetic.

  16. My 3 1/2 year old son has tissue attached from his upper lip to the middle of his teeth. He was diagnosed with speech delay. I almost feel like maybe the excess skin on his upper lip may be prohibiting him to pronounce words clearly almost like he is clenching his teeth or his jaw won’t open. Please can some one give me insight if this might be effecting his speech, has this happened to any one else, and was there success.Please any information would be helpful as my son is frustrated and thinks its easier to point, and Imfrustrated because I don’t want him to be behind were people won’t pay him attention because they can’t understand him
    Thanks in advance

  17. Hi! I have been contemplating on getting this procedure done on my 6 year old daughter and today we got the appt scheduled. She had a humongous gap in between her two front baby teeth and the space is still there, even after they have fell out. Her frenulum hasn’t given her any problems but she slipped and fell on the gym floor at her school and ripped it a little. I was born with and have always had a nice sized gap in my mouth and that is something that I don’t want her to have to deal with when she gets older. Also, I understand the “wait and see approach” but why would you want to wait and risk the complications that come along with having a gap?? Also, this procedure is less painful and less cheaper than just merely throwing braces on a child. I wouldn’t want to have to burden my child with the process of wearing braces for all of those years. I probably should have mentioned the fact that her grandfather has a gap in between his teeth also, that is almost as wide as a popsicle stick so that is one of the major reasons I see fit to start working on the problem now, than later.

  18. Hi Tom,

    I have taken my 9 yr. old son to see a Periodontist about this frenectomy procedure and he is taking the “wait & see ” approach as well. My son has his 2 front permanent teeth in but still has one baby tooth on the right side and permanent on the left coming in. He suggests we wait until those permanent teeth come in fully to see if they somehow shift to close in the gap. I do think my son may need braces eventually so I was wondering if it would be best to wait until after braces to see if they help the gap.

    Any thoughts? By the way your sight is very helpful.

  19. I have just had my 5month old done as was having trouble feeding, He was sucking in air and always spilling up until the next feed, after the procedure no more spilling!! he can now latch as he should. HOWEVER…. If I ever knew about this lip tie issue eariler (than 5months) I would DEFFENATLY RECOMMEND getting baby done as soon as possible ie: days old or a couple of weeks old…the longer you leave it the more they feel and the harder it is for the lazer to cut! my boy waz the oldest our dentist had done this on and had a hard time with the lazer cutting and also soooo much harder holding baby down, whereas younger babys he had through were easier and quicker to do and no screaming or pain after it. So if i could do it all over again i would do it asap…not wait…. I guess time will tell wether it stops him having gappy teeth like his dad. but the spilling/latching is a uge improvment.

  20. Hi, I’m in the UK. About 6 months ago my now 8 and half yr old son was referred to university hospital in London for Labial Frenum surgery by his dentist. The hospital refused to do it, said it was either a dental chair operation (which the dentist wasn’t happy to do), or to leave it until he’s at least 10. Over the last 6 months the gap between is adult teeth has closed up, probably being pushed by the adult teeth erupting either side of the front 2. The canines haven’t come through yet. We returned to the dentist again recently for a check up and there was a different dentist who again insisted this operation needed doing, that his daughter has the labial frenum attachment and he will be getting hers done as soon as her adult teeth appear. He said the gap may close up as the teeth move around as others come through, but that the two front teeth will open up again unless the skin between them is cut. Seems to me that the waiting approach is only going to lead to having to wear a brace in future. However, of course I don’t want my son to suffer unnecessary trauma. I just don’t know what to do, I’m going on the strongly felt views of two different dentists, but find myself up against the head consultant at the hospital who doesn’t agree. We have our second appointment next week and I don’t know whether to insist on them doing it, or to go private and have laser surgery, or just leave well alone…..help! …Thanks.

  21. Hello,

    Our little girl is only three weeks old and her labia frenum is attached behind her gum line, making breast feeding uncomfortable and less effective than it should be. Is this a situation that means we should get surgery? I am receiving conflicting information from doctors, dentists and breast feeding specialists.

    Thanks for any info!

  22. My 8 year old has had extra tissue above his front teeth and below his bottom teeth. At age 3, I was advised that should be removed. At age 8, the new dentist recommends that he have a frenectomy on both. He will need to numb both gums. The top left tooth took about 6 month to begin to come in after his baby tooth fell out. It is almost fully in and is coming in at an angle. Is it harmful for the extra tissue to pull on the gums? The dentist wants in done soon but wanted an extra appointment to numb him and do the procedure. It looks like he will need braces.

  23. My 8 year old has had extra tissue above his front teeth and below his bottom teeth. At age 3, I was advised that should be removed. At age 8, the new dentist recommends that he have a frenectomy on both. He will need to numb both gums. The top left tooth took about 6 month to begin to come in after his baby tooth fell out. It is almost fully in and is coming in at an angle. Is it harmful for the extra tissue to pull on the gums? The dentist wants in done soon but wanted an extra appointment to numb him and do the procedure. It looks like he will need braces.

  24. My 8 year old has had extra tissue above his front teeth and below his bottom teeth. At age 3, I was advised that should be removed. At age 8, the new dentist recommends that he have a frenectomy on both. He will need to numb both gums. The top left tooth took about 6 month to begin to come in after his baby tooth fell out. It is almost fully in and is coming in at an angle. Is it harmful for the extra tissue to pull on the gums? The dentist wants in done soon but wanted an extra appointment to numb him and do the procedure. It looks like he will need braces.

  25. Just wanted to say thank you so much for your website. Simply doing an online search turns up so much information, much of it not specific or helpful in any way, and this site is a godsend. Thank you.
    My son is 15 months and has a thick upper labial frenulum and quite a significant gap between his front teeth, and his pediatrician did say that it would likely need to be snipped at some point, but did not give specifics. He had no problems latching during breastfeeding, it doesn’t seem to cause him pain, and he is beginning to be pretty verbal without any apparent problems. I feel so much better now about waiting to have surgery – not that anyone has pressured us yet, but I also feel confident that I can address anyone’s concerns about his appearance by saying that we will wait to see if the gap closes with his permanent teeth, and explain why the surgery is not necessary at this point. Thanks for all your very good information and advice for everyone who has written in; I wanted you to know how much this means to me as a parent! :)

  26. Tom,

    Why have my comments been removed?

    I provided an invaluable resource for patients wanting to get some more information about this subject, and my comments were all removed. Is this really in the best of your patients’ kids? Dr Kotlow and others have been performing this procedure for decades and have tons of knowledge. You are fresh out of school with a great opportunity ahead of you. I invite you to read his articles and rethink what you have been passing out here on your blog

    – Dr Mc (another dentist with many years of experience)

    • Hi Brian – I apologize for that. Many people leave comments here and many are well-intentioned. I do get over 100 spam comments every day, and since yours had a link to your website as well as an extra link in them, they appeared to be spam. Many dentists spam this blog to gain backlinks to their website, so I apologize that your well-intentioned comments were deleted.

      You can re-post them. All I ask is that you link to some specific material that would help the previous commenter’s question – simply linking to a long list of academic articles that many patients could find hard to understand may not be too helpful to them.

      Also, what do you think that I need to “rethink” in this post? I did write it back in dental school, and I know things are different in the “real world” then in academia, but I think you can agree that many practitioners do prematurely recommend frenectomies. I will be writing an article very soon on lingual frenectomies – the current one deals mainly with labial frenectomies. Have a great day – Thanks for your follow-up comment!

    • It’s the same in the UK. I went back to a London leading dental hospital & was assured by the consultant that they don’t like to do frenectomies until the child is 11 or 12. My son’s dentist insisted that he should have it done but the consultant said not until his adult teeth have come & then it would normally be done in liaison with an orthodontist. I could see that they would be reluctant to put a young child through that, especially as a first experience at the dentists.

  27. My daughter is almost 8. She had a gap between her baby front teeth. Both front teeth have fallen out now. At my daughter’s last dental visit for a cleaning the dentist said she will need a frenumectomy or else the permanent teeth will also have between them. I have been researching this and I find that many suggest waiting until the permanent teeth come in to see if they will have no gap on their own. I read that there is a chance that will be no gap when the permanent teeth come in, but also a chance that there will be. If she does end up with a gap between her permanent teeth she will need the frenumectomy and braces. My 14 year old son has braces…so expensive! Is it best to take the chance and not have the frenumectomy done now, and wait and see? What harmful effect could happen if I have the frenumectomy done now even if she didn’t need it for her permanent teeth to have no gap?

    • Hi Terry – In school we were taught to not perform a frenectomy (for the sole purpose of correcting a gap between the two front teeth) until the permanent canines have come in.. If the frenectomy is done now, it is possible that scar tissue will form and will end up being the cause of the gap.

      It would be a good idea to share with your dentist the quotes from the pediatric dentistry textbooks that I included in the article above and have a conversation with your child’s dentist to determine if a frenectomy is really needed.

      I hope that helps, Terry. Let me know if you have any other questions.

      • Tom,

        You are correct about the scar tissue. BUT only if you use stainless steel. Using a laser produces no scar tissue. So there is no reason not to do it sooner, especially if that tissue is low.
        I was taught the same thing in school. However, the education on lasers was not present then, and it’s a much different ballgame.

        Brian McMurtry, DDS

        • Thank you both for your comments and input. I am still stuck and unsure. I see both points and possibilities. If it’s not going to be necessary than I don’t want to put my daughter through the procedure or take the chance of scar tissue. I don’t know if her dentist would be using a laser or not. On the other hand, if she is going to need the procedure in the future to correct a gap with her permanent teeth than I’d rather do the procedure now as a preventative. I really do not want her to have to need braces. Her baby teeth had a pretty good size gap. People would think she had lost a front tooth when she hadn’t yet. There is no way to know the future though, so what ever I decide will be taking a chance. I will speak with her dentist about the procedure. I am also going to bring her to another local dentist for their opinion as well. Thank you again!

      • Thank you both for your comments and input. I am still stuck and unsure. I see both points and possibilities. If it’s not going to be necessary than I don’t want to put my daughter through the procedure or take the chance of scar tissue. I don’t know if her dentist would be using a laser or not. On the other hand, if she is going to need the procedure in the future to correct a gap with her permanent teeth than I’d rather do the procedure now as a preventative. I really do not want her to have to need braces. Her baby teeth had a pretty good size gap. People would think she had lost a front tooth when she hadn’t yet. There is no way to know the future though, so what ever I decide will be taking a chance. I will speak with her dentist about the procedure. I am also going to bring her to another local dentist for their opinion as well. Thank you again!

  28. Hello, My daughter turned 4 in October we have check ups every 6 months with her dentist. The last two visits (6 mos ago and 1 year ago) he mentioned this procedure to try and avoid a gap in the future. I felt odd trying to change something that is characteristic, a family trait, and to me does not detract from her beauty.

    Well, today we had a visit again and we have been refered out to a surgeon. Since her visit 6 months ago her eating has somewhat changed and she will frequently say her “gap hurts.” In the last 2 days she has stopped eating a sandwich, an apple, and one of her favorite foods, corn on the cob. Sometimes she will eat part of her dinner, complain, and leave the rest of her food. I have also noticed that the muscle between the teeth seems to have gotten larger and more pronounced, widening the gap.

    Now that I have been reading online and am aware of the age recommendations as well as the possibility of the scar tissue causing a permanent gap i am again unsure. Our appointment is next week.

    If anyone has feedback or input please let me know. Especially if you have a child that has had the procedure done, how did it go and what has the outcome been?

    Is there anywhere that I can view statistics on outcomes of this procedure?

    Thank you !!

    • Corissa,

      At age 4, there is no advantage to performing a frenectomy early vs waiting. However, trauma (which is what it sounds like here) is good indication to have it looked at, and if recommended, have the procedure performed.

      FIND A LASER DENTIST, though. As Dr. Tom and I have stated, the old-school way of doing this procedure (scalpel) will cause scarring which can be problematic for ortho concerns down the road. Using a laser to do the procedure is very safe, offers quick healing, and discomfort afterwards is very minimal (usually only requires a dose or two of tylenol or ibuprofen).

      I’m getting ready to post some before and afters on my website soon, showing how non-invasive this procedure is.

      I hope your daughter’s appointment went well, if she had the procedure done. If not, look for a laser dentist who can do it for you.

      Dr. Brian

      • Thank you very much Brian. This is exactly what I have decided to do. I actually cancelled the visit for more time to consider and research.

        For now her eating habits have improved and she has not complained for some time.

        Unfortunately, with the insurance we have the doctors are limited and as of yet I have not located one that uses lasers.

        Thank you all for the information presented here. I will continue to look for a doctor in California that accepts Medi-cal AND uses laser treatment waiting until the situation again presents itself as more of a necessity.

        • Corissa, Good Luck!

          I don’t know anyone in CA using lasers and accepting Medi-cal. I would suggest calling the local dental society and getting a list of dentists accepting it.

          Then goto laserdentistry (dot) com and plug in your zip code to find a nearby laser dentist. Bounce that off your medical list (or call them)

          Dr Brian

  29. Our daughter, age 8m/o, was scheduled for a labial frenectomy in Taiwan. Out dentist suggested that she should scheduled this procedure as early as possible. But my uncle, who is a dentist from US, told us to cancel this. After reading your information along with other information online, and after having a conversation with an orthodontist, we have decided not to do the frenectomy and instead wait to see how her permanent teeth come in.
    Thank you for taking time to have this site! I appreciate the information

  30. Hi Tom, wow thank you for all of your time in replying to all of these questions!

    We have an eight year old who has been seen by a school dentist and told he should have his labial frenulum cut to reduce his gap between his front teeth.

    I have read your comments that we wait until the adult canines come in, and not cut due to the potential for scar tissue. However, what are your thoughts on laser? Does this result in no scaring? Has it been around long enough to measure the scaring?

    Or regardless of scaring is the thought that the canines will do all the work squashing the front teeth together?

    Hmm, would we be wise to see someone for a personal assessment? If so with whom – a periodontist or an orthodontist? ;)) thanks!!

    • Most of the literature supports waiting, because it is dated from the 70s or earlier. That is what we were trained on.

      HOWEVER, LASER CHANGES EVERYTHING. And the literature is starting to be more forthcoming in regards to this procedure with laser.

      Laser does not produce the kind of scarring that a scalpel will. So now can be an excellent time to have it done, based on what you are posting.

      A general dentist who uses laser should be able to perform this procedure without the need for a specialist. Ask if they do this procedure with laser though. You want someone with experience.

      Dr McMurtry, CharlotteLaserDentist

  31. I had a very large (genetic) gap between my front teeth growing up with the extra skin hanging down between the two front teeth. I believe I was about 8-10 yrs old when I had it removed. I do remember it being very uncomfortable afterwards. Otherwise, my teeth were straight and there was no need for braces. Around 16/17 yrs old my dentist put two small dots of some sort of cement on the top outside edges of those two front teeth and I wore a rubber band around them to pull the space together. (the cement was to keep the rubber band in place) Once the space was together, he put a butterfly clip on the back side of my teeth. I was told it could stay forever. However, at 20 yrs old, I was accidently elobowed in the mouth which broke the small wire and the dentist removed it. Now at the age of 47, I have a very very small, hairline, space. It has never grown any further apart even though there is room in my mouth for it to expand.
    My daughter had the space and the extra skin, and now her 2 daughters have it also. One of her daughters is only 2 1/2 and her extra skin hangs down to the bottom of her baby teeth.
    Genetics are genetics.. and if your going to have a space between your teeth there is nothing you can do about it at a young age. My personal opinion.. how mine was done worked great for me mentally and physically. I was never picked on about it and by the time I had the rubberband, everyone had braces. So it was no big deal for me.

  32. Hello Tom,
    first i should thank u for such a neat and concise explanation about the doubts we have. today my sister called to say she fixed frenectomy for her 6 yr old daughter. when i was looking for some latest developments in the net, i came across ur site, which is very helpful and my special appreciation for not puttting any cheap flickering ads which irritates and disturbs u while reading the actual stuff.

    anyway i passed the information to her and also asked her to browse ur site, thanks once again and will let u know what she decides!

    thanks
    Dr Usha

  33. Tom, please allow me to disagree with the suggested age for a labial frenectomy. The diastema between the two central anterior teeth is easily noticed and any experienced dentist will tell you if it is abnormally wide. A simple test is to pull on the frenum and to see whether it pulls (blanches) the tissue just palatally to the gap. If that happens, you know that the frenum is a band of connective tissue between the two teeth. And as soon as the two laterals erupt, you can see if there is enough space for them to be “straight”. If that is not the case then an early frenectomy is required. And you need to close the gap immediately (it takes maybe as long as two days). This allows the laterals to erupt easier and in better position. You do need to tie the two teeth in position in some way for some time, but certainly not longer than a few months. If you delay closing the gap you end up with reparative connective tissue between the two front teeth and all you have achieved is cutting the frenum off. One’s own experience as dentist should tell you whether major orthodontics is on the way and in that case the procedure should be postponed. A frenectomy can be a preventive measure. I hope this gives some more perspective to the views regarding the procedure.

  34. Hi,

    Both of my children just had a frenectomy, they are 6 and 7. Our dentist had told us that they needed to have it done so that their gaps would close up. After reading your conclusion on this matter, I wish that I had waited until they were about 11. I sure hope that there will not be issues with the gaps closing up due to scar tissue now.

    • Tina,

      IF the procedure was done with laser, then there is no cause for alarm. If it was done with scalpel, that may be a different story.

      The thought process is that if done early, the residual scar will push the teeth back apart after ortho is completed. That is why you usually wait IF done with scalpel. Scalpel = scar. Laser does not = scar, which is why it can be done early without fear of scar and actually allow the teeth to come together.

      URLs seem to get flagged here, so if you google search my name and charlotte laser dentist, you will quickly find my site. If you goto the smile gallery and go most of the way down, you will see a child’s picture where we performed this procedure and the space closed on its own in a matter of a month (according to the parent). My picture was at 7 weeks postop but the gap was closed.

      Hope this puts your fears at ease

      Dr. McMurtry

  35. My seven year old son’s dentist told us yesterday that he needs to have a frenectomy because it is causing his gum to recede from his teeth and is creating a problem with him properly cleaning his teeth. They do the procedure by laser and offer things to make the child more comfortable (I can’t remember exactly what). The dentist said that most children that have it done in the morning even go back to school afterwards but that ice cream is a great reward for a job well done. I was definitely going to wait until he was older due to the concern about scar tissue, but the laser seems to take that problem away. We have also been told that he will need braces later because of the gaps between all of his straight teeth. I grew up self conscious about a slit between my front teeth (that was eventually fixed in high school with a binder that has managed to stay in tack all these years) and I never needed braces. With that in mind, I think I am going to opt for the procedure now in hopes that his bigger adult teeth will fill in all the spaces and braces might not be needed later. Thank you to everyone involved on this site for your comments and experiences! It definitely has been helpful to me!!!

  36. Thanks for your article.
    Our dentist suggested my 12 year old daughter to have a frenectom to avoid more gaps between her front teeth.Just like every mother,I started gathering more data upon his advise.Your article and comments helped me so much but frankly speaking I am still afraid of doing this surgery for my daughter, thinking that maybe I can do it in future by laser.The gaps between the front teeth is not that much considerable.The main question in my mind:Is it really necessary to do it now? What will happen if I do it later?

  37. My 8 year old daughter has a moderate gap between her 2 front teeth(front incisiors). She lost her baby tooth (lateral incisor) located next to the 2 front incisors one year ago (when she was 7), but that permanent tooth (lateral incisor) has not come in yet…her dentist recommends a frenectomy in hopes of those 2 front teeth closing the gap and that one lateral incisor tooth being able to come in. What do you think?
    Thank you.

  38. My 6 year old daughter just lost both her upper teeth:) . Ourvdentist told me to make sure to make an appt , the moment that happens if we want to avoid a big gap between her teeth.
    My father has a huge gap between his teeth,
    Am I the worse mother for not wating my child to have that? But surgery? I hate the idea , she is just so young, with 0 pain , no speech problems .
    do I have the option to wait , am I damaging her chances of having beautiful teeth.
    Can i tell my dentist to back off.

    Thanks.
    Margaret

  39. My 8 year daughter has a pronoused space between her 2 front teeth. The dentist said that her teeth will never close until she has a frenectomy. The periodontists says wait until she gets her braces.
    My daughter is self conscience about this space.
    My question is
    If her teeth will never close until this procedure is preformed, why not do it now? Maybe by having this procedure done, it could give natural a chance to correct this?
    Thank you

    • Colleen, you are correct, having the procedure now CAN allow the teeth to migrate together on their own.

      HOWEVER, the procedure must be done with a LASER. If you go the traditional method (read, scissors or scalpel), it will create a scar that can ultimately cause the two front teeth to separate after ortho is completed. By using a laser you don’t get that kind of scarring and it will allow for natural migration. Ortho might still be needed to close some space, but it really depends on how wide the space is to begin with.

      In summary, laser = treat now, stainless steel = treat later

      if you goto

      www dot charlottelaserdentist dot com and goto Patient Gallery, scroll most of the way down and you will see a good example of a laser frenectomy procedure allowing a space to close naturally on its own.

  40. My daughter fell one day after she turned one year old and shoved a bottle up under her lip ripping her frenum. We of course panicked and took her to the ER where we learned what most parents learn there was nothing that could be done. We consulted with our doctor weeks later and were told that it would heal but most likely not reattach. We found out as my daughter’s teeth were coming in that this ended up NOT being the case. It did reattach and did just the opposite of what all articles and people have said. He grew back in between her front teeth and to the under side of her mouth. She has recently lost her front teeth and one has started to come back in. We have consulted with a dentist and he feels that surgery will need to be done but there is conflicting information on when this should take place. There is no way her adult teeth will grow in properly with this skin attached between them so why would we want to wait for her adult teeth to fully grow in? If this procedure is done before her second top tooth comes in won’t the chance of a gap remaining be decreased? Is there a type of procedure that is better than another when dealing with this and will there be any complications or after affects to the roof of her mouth this it attaches clear in there? I am very worried about waiting to have this fixed. Any advice would be extremely appreciated. Thanks.

    • Jamie,

      Please read my comment above for Colleen’s question.

      Laser, by far, is the better way to treat this. By using laser, there is no need to wait and can allow these teeth to migrate naturally on their own a:)

      goto Dr. Kotlow’s website. He has written a number of articles about these conditions, and their may even be an underlying tongue tie as well

      goto www dot kiddsteeth dot com (there are 2 d in the address). Goto the articles page, and the 2nd article is a fact sheet he has put together. there are a number of good articles on his site.

      Laser usage is NOT something taught in school (although we are starting to hear some schools using them a little bit). To an extent it’s outside the box thinking, but there is literature out there to support various procedures with phenomenal results that goes against traditional mindset. I am able to do fillings (and big ones) without having to numb patients up, gum surgeries without having to flap back all the gum tissue, bleach gums, reshape gums, and so much more in a more clean, esthetic, quicker healing way.

  41. Our dentist recommended my 9 year old son get a maxillary labial frenectomy. After reading the information on your site we are cancelling our appointment. He still has his primary canines, so I feel they are recommending this procedure way too early.

    They also recommended we have his baby teeth on the bottom pulled as the permanent teeth were coming in behind them. We did our own research on this topic as well, and decided to let the baby teeth come out on their own. Now that the baby teeth have come out, and his permanent teeth have come in his bottom teeth are perfectly straight. At first they were very crooked, but have worked themselves out.

    Thank you for your information about these matters. I really don’t want my son to be subjected to any unnecessary procedures, and the information on your site helped clarify that we definitely don’t need to have this frenectomy done now.

  42. Hi Tom,

    Greetings from a fellow Virginian! What a great conversation. You have put my mind to ease because as many others have posted, I also worry about performing a frenectomy too early. I have a specific question that I don’t see answered thus far. My son is 4 and also has a large gap. His labial membrane is very thick and connects from underneath his lip down to the base of his gum line and around to the back of his gum line. There is literally a thick raised glob of tissue that wraps around his gum line. Will this tissue thin as he gets older? The membrane is so thick that it creates a physical barrier and I wonder if permanent teeth even stand a chance to push it out of the way. And if a frenectomy is required later in life, do they laser off tissue on the gum line too?

    And a less important question if I may, his front two baby teeth are significantly longer than the rest. Is this an indication that his permanent teeth could be this way too. My precious boy is too sweet to go through life with buck teeth. So I was wondering if you had insight on this too.

    I truly appreciate your time. Truly!

    • Hi Michele – The tissue can change as he gets older, if not, a frenectomy can easily be performed at an older age when he is better able to cope with the surgery. I know with the prior surgery technique of cutting, they can easily take away the tissue at the gum line. I would imagine that lasers could do the same, but I don’t have any experience with using a laser for a full frenectomy.

      As far as whether or not the permanent teeth will look like the baby teeth, it really varies. Sometimes they do and sometimes they don’t. The teeth can easily be contoured though if you are not satisfied with the shape following orthodontic treatment. I hope that helps!

    • Michele,

      Could it thin out? Anything is possible, but in my experience, if it is that far down as you describe, that kind of pathologic gap will persist into the adult teeth.My suggestion would be to find a laser dentist to evaluate him. As long as there are no speech, trauma, or decay issues, then waiting until the adult front teeth come in to treat is an often recommended stance. Waiting until after ortho is only for scalpel/scissors treatment as that kind of scar can affect movement, but not laser. With laser, it is preferred to treat earlier to help ortho close the gap.

      These comments are all based on assumption and not construed as patient advice until seen in person.

      As far as how the adult teeth will be shaped, I agree with Dr. Draper. We won’t know until they come in.

      Dr. Larry Kotlow has some great info on his website in the articles section. Kiddsteeth dot com

      Dr. McMurtry
      Charlotte, NC

  43. Hi,

    My daughter is 8 years old, and over the past several months has had a fixed retainer in the top of her mouth to fix her under bite that she was born with, and to give her more room (we have very small mouths). She was also born missing her top two lateral incisors, both baby and adult (genetic), so the next step has been braces on just the top four teeth, her two central adult teeth, and her two baby canines, I think to pull the top two center teeth together. We have yet to decide what will be done with the missing teeth. Anyway, recently, the dentist told me that she needs to have an upper lip frenectomy, and it seems her’s comes down pretty low. I’m reading different information on the subject though, and am really not in support of doing anything that’s unnecessary. She has no pain, and eats/smiles find, so I’m assuming this is just because he is afraid he won’t be able to close the space between her teeth. Can you tell me what your take on this is? Were not even really to the point where we know the space won’t close, as she just got the braces on recently, but he already wants to proceed. I appreciate any help you can lend.

    Sherri

  44. I was told today at a Dentist appt. that both my daughters need a frenectomy. They are 6 and 8 years old. I had a frenectomy about 10 years ago when I was an adult. Neither daughter has any pain or trouble talking. Their dentist made it sound like it is common to do this now. I found your site as I am sitting here researching this topic and am glad I found you.

  45. My 2 1/2 year old has a very visible lip tie. I believe this is why she quit breastfeeding at 3 months old. I continued to exclusively pump until she was 1 but at the time I had no idea why she basically went on a breastfeeding strike. At her first dental check up, her dentist took a look and said that she does have a lip tie but that at her age it would be hard to tell if she will out grow the tie or if later she will need a frenectomy. Since she is not bothered by it (and we are past the breastfeeding stage) he suggested that we just keep an eye on it as she grows and we’ll reevaluate after her adult dentition comes in. At nearly 3, she speaks quite clearly so I am confident in the dentist’s suggestion of monitoring her lip tie over time.

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