Learn how to tell if the child is tongue-tied or not with all the relevant information that you need to know by reading this article.
Not every child is born perfect; some are born with specific inadequacies that dissolve with time as our medical science is growing and developing its branches in all directions each day. One such inadequacy is tongue-tie, but there is nothing to panic about it. In this article, you will read how to tell if the baby is tongue-tied, its symptoms, its impact on the child’s speech, and its cure.
What is Tongue-Tie?
Tongue-tie is a common defect in a baby in which the tongue is stuck with the bottom of the mouth. The scientific name of tongue-tie is ankyloglossia. This can happen due to many reasons that you will read in the further stages of this article.
How to Tell If the Baby is Tongue-Tied?
Here is a list of all the symptoms of tongue-tie that you can easily observe in your child:
1. Difficulty in Lifting the Tongue
You can tell that your child has a tongue-tie if you observe your child facing difficulty lifting the tongue and touching the upper teeth in his/her mouth.
2. Strange Sounds While Feeding
A child with a tongue-tie is likely to make clicking sounds while you breastfeed him/her. You may not be able to listen to the sounds in a noisy place, so you may either breastfeed in a quiet surrounding or listen closely to any sound that your baby might be making.
A child is also prone to vomit after having the meal when s/he has a tongue tie.
4. Trouble in the Movement of the Tongue
The child faces problems in moving his/her tongue inside the mouth, and even when they try to pass it through the front teeth, they fail.
5. A Gap in Front Teeth
Due to several trials of making failed tongue movements, the child ends up getting a gap in their front teeth,
6. The Shape of the Tongue Differs
Ankyloglossia has a lot to do with the shape of the tongue. A child having this disorder is likely to have a notched or heart-shaped tongue.
7. Poor Weight Gain
If your child is underweight even after regular attempts, there’s a possibility that it could be a symptom of tongue-tie.
How Does a Tongue Tie Hamper Speech Development?
1. Problem in Speaking Some Letters
Since tongue-tie has a lot to do with the movement of the tongue in a child, you see that it entirely impacts speech development. Based on general observations, you can see that the child faces problems in speaking letters like T, D, Z, S, Th, R, L, and N. Every child is unique, and the notes may vary from child to child. You will see that s/he will never face problems in making vowel sounds as such sounds do not require the involvement of the tongue while speaking.
2. Delay in Speech
A child with a tongue-tie will delay speaking, but this is not the only cause of delayed speech. Not every tongue-tied child delays in speaking. At the same time, not every child who delays in speaking is tongue-tied.
3. Cleft Lip/Palate
During the facial development of an unborn baby, you can see a slight opening in the upper lip. This condition is often called the cleft lip. You can observe the same inside the mouth in some infants, which you can call cleft palate.
How to Cure
If diagnosed in the early stages, you can treat tongue-tie clinically with the help of the following methods.
1. Get it Clipped in a Clinic
If you observe that your child has a tongue-tie during your child’s infancy, you can quickly get it clipped at a clinic. The process is called frenotomy, in which the doctor checks out the lingual frenulum and snaps it out using sterile scissors. The process causes the slightest discomfort, and the baby can breastfeed immediately. There is no loss of blood during the process.
2. Craniosacral Therapy
This therapy is generally about relieving pain by catching specific points in the head, upper back, or lower back. Some studies say that craniosacral therapy can cure tongue-tie in babies without undergoing any clinical surgery.
Can tongue-tie resolve on its own?
To get rid of the problem, people suggest a clinical surgery, and there is a hundred percent success rate in the outcomes. But sometimes, the infant is not physically fit enough to undergo surgery. In these cases, you should wait and let the tongue tie resolve on its own. You can observe that the issue resolves by the age of 2-3 years in many cases.
The Bottom Line
Having a tongue-tied baby is quite common, and there is nothing to panic about it. It would be best to understand that every child is unique and comes out with an outstanding outcome. All you can do is keep patience and do what it takes to resolve it appropriately in the said age groups. And now that you’ve learned how to tell if the baby is tongue-tied, seek appropriate medical treatments at the earliest stages.