A frenum is a piece of tissue that prevents an organ from moving. There is a frenum that attaches your upper lip to the gums, while another connects the lower lip to the gums. There also is a frenum that attaches your tongue to the floor of your mouth. A frenum that is too short or thick, will cause problems in speech patterns and tooth misalignment. In infants, a shortened frenum underneath the tongue will inhibit breastfeeding. When the frenum disrupts movement, growth, or development, corrective action is necessary to resolve the situation.
A frenectomy is a minor surgical procedure that is performed in your dentist’s office. It can be performed with either a scalpel or laser and takes less than 15 minutes. Using a laser causes very little bleeding and does not require stitches. A laser also results in less postoperative discomfort and a shorter healing time. Young children and infants are put under general anesthesia for the procedure and adults have the procedure performed using local anesthesia. If your child needs a frenectomy, there is nothing to worry about. The procedure is very successful and causes minimal discomfort.