Tongue-tie, also known as ankyloglossia, is a condition where the strip of skin connecting the tongue to the floor of the mouth is shorter than usual, restricting tongue movement. This can lead to issues with breastfeeding, speech, and oral hygiene. 

At the Tongue Tie Institute, a part of Upbeat Pediatric Dentistry, we specialize in diagnosing and treating tongue-tie using advanced laser technology. 

Preparing your child for tongue-tie treatment can help ensure the procedure goes smoothly and minimizes any anxiety they may have. 

Here’s a guide on how to explain the procedure to your child and tips for reducing their anxiety and ensuring their comfort.


Explaining the Procedure to Your Child

1. Use Simple and Reassuring Language

Children may feel scared or anxious about medical procedures, so it’s important to use simple and reassuring language when explaining the tongue-tie treatment. 

Here’s an example of how you might explain it:

“Sometimes, the tiny piece of skin under your tongue is too tight and makes it hard to move your tongue properly. We’re going to visit a special doctor who will use a gentle laser to fix this so you can move your tongue better. It’s quick and will help you a lot.”

2. Be Honest but Positive

Honesty is key to building trust, but it’s also important to focus on the positive aspects of the procedure. Let your child know that the treatment will help them feel better and make things easier, like eating and speaking. Emphasize the benefits and reassure them that the doctors are there to help.

3. Use Visual Aids

Children often understand concepts better with visual aids. You can show them pictures or videos of the procedure, using age-appropriate and non-scary materials. There are also children’s books available that explain medical procedures in a child-friendly way. Visual aids can make the process less abstract and more understandable.

4. Role-Play the Procedure

Role-playing can be an effective way to prepare your child for what to expect. You can use a toy doctor set to simulate the procedure, taking turns being the doctor and the patient. This playful approach can help demystify the process and make your child feel more comfortable and in control.


Tips for Reducing Anxiety and Ensuring Comfort

Visit the Clinic Before the Procedure

Familiarizing your child with the clinic environment before the actual procedure can help reduce anxiety. Schedule a pre-visit where your child can meet the dentist, see the equipment, and explore the waiting area. Knowing what to expect can make the day of the procedure much less intimidating.

Keep a Calm Demeanor

Children often take cues from their parents’ emotions. If you remain calm and confident, your child is more likely to feel secure. Avoid expressing any anxiety you might have about the procedure in front of your child.

Bring Comfort Items

Allow your child to bring a favorite toy, blanket, or stuffed animal to the appointment. Having a familiar and comforting item can provide a sense of security and ease anxiety.

Practice Relaxation Techniques

Teach your child simple relaxation techniques such as deep breathing or visualization. Practice these techniques together before the appointment so they can use them if they start to feel anxious.

Plan a Reward

Plan a small reward for your child after the procedure, such as a trip to the park, a favorite snack, or a new toy. Knowing they have something to look forward to can help them stay positive and cooperative.

Stay With Your Child

Whenever possible, stay with your child during the procedure. Your presence can be very reassuring. Hold their hand, talk to them calmly, and provide physical comfort as needed.

Post-Procedure Comfort

After the procedure, follow all post-care instructions provided by the dentist to ensure your child’s comfort and promote healing. Offer soft foods and plenty of fluids, and monitor for any signs of discomfort or complications. Reassure your child that any soreness will go away soon and that they did a great job.

Encourage Questions

Encourage your child to ask questions about the procedure and express any fears or concerns they may have. Answer their questions honestly and reassure them that it’s okay to feel nervous. This open communication can help alleviate their anxiety.

Seeking Support

Preparing your child for tongue-tie treatment involves clear communication, emotional support, and practical strategies to reduce anxiety. 

By explaining the procedure in simple terms, using visual aids, and incorporating relaxation techniques, you can help your child feel more at ease. 

Remember to stay calm, offer comfort, and provide plenty of reassurance throughout the process. For more information or to schedule a consultation, visit our website or contact us

Together, we can help your child achieve better oral health and improved quality of life.