What is a Frenectomy?
October 23, 2014
A frenum is a fold of tissue on the inside of the mouth. Frena (the plural of frenum) are found under the tongue, between the upper two front teeth and on the sides of the gums. In a frenectomy procedure one of these folds of tissue is removed.
A frenum actually does not have a purpose, so removing one of them will not result in the loss of function. When a frenum is in the wrong place or is too tight it can cause complications. A maxillofacial surgeon can perform a frenectomy in order to fix this problem.
Some people who have a tight frenum under the tongue experience ankyloglossia, a condition known as tongue tie. Tongue tie may interfere with feeding infants, and can eventually cause problems when the child is learning to talk.
Occasionally a frenum is attached between the upper front teeth, which may cause problems when a child’s permanent teeth come in. This may cause a gap to form, or the teeth may not be able to come in at all.
Although it’s uncommon, a frenum inside the lower lip can pull the gum away from the lower front teeth. This can result in gum problems.
What are the Risks?
The surgery may need to be redone if the operation does not solve the problem that you are having. Redoing a lingual frenectomy (under the tongue) is somewhat common. A labial frenectomy is done to remove the frenum between the front teeth, and rarely needs to be redone.
Infection and bleeding are a risk of any procedure, but are rare symptoms following a frenectomy. Antibiotics are not usually prescribed.
A frenectomy in the lower jaw can bruise the nerve that gives feeling to the chin and lower lip. This will cause numbness in the area and can last for several months. However, the lip will not droop because nerves do not affect movement, just feeling. With careful surgical technique, this is rare.
Contact a Wilmington Maxillofacial Surgeon Today!
If you’re still having trouble after a lingual frenectomy, then call Dr. Hasson at Wilmington Oral Surgery or make an appointment by contacting us at 910-793-0440 today!