Parents often face tough decisions when it comes to their child’s health, especially when dealing with conditions like tongue-tie. 

Tongue-tie, medically known as ankyloglossia, occurs when the band of tissue connecting the tongue to the floor of the mouth is too tight, restricting movement. 

While some may question the necessity of addressing a tongue-tie, the truth is that untreated tongue-tie can have significant short and long-term consequences for both children and adults. 

In this blog post, we’ll delve into the potential risks and costs associated with not fixing a child’s tongue-tie, highlighting the importance of early intervention.

Short-term Implications

The short-term implications of untreated tongue-tie can manifest early in infancy. Parents may notice symptoms such as nipple pain for breastfeeding mothers or slow weight gain in infants. Other signs may include reflux, colic, excessive gas, hiccups, choking, or prolonged feeding times. 

Unfortunately, these symptoms are often dismissed or attributed to other causes, leading to delayed diagnosis and treatment.

Infants with untreated tongue-tie may experience feeding difficulties that impact their nutritional intake and overall growth. Parents may resort to switching to bottle feeding in an attempt to alleviate breastfeeding challenges, but the underlying issues often persist. 

Colic, reflux, and other gastrointestinal symptoms may also be misdiagnosed, resulting in unnecessary medical interventions and expenses.


Long-term Implications

As children grow older, untreated tongue-tie can continue to pose challenges in various areas of development. Speech issues, solid feeding difficulties, and sleep disturbances are common among children with unresolved tongue-tie. Speech therapy and feeding therapy may be required to address these issues, adding to the financial burden on families.


Posterior Tongue Tie

Posterior tongue tie, a type of tongue-tie where the restriction is located further back on the tongue, can have profound effects on sleep quality and overall health. A restricted tongue can obstruct the airway during sleep, leading to breathing difficulties and disrupted sleep patterns. 

Children with untreated posterior tongue tie may experience symptoms such as mouth breathing, snoring, and sleep-disordered breathing. The consequences of untreated tongue-tie extend beyond physical health, impacting cognitive function and emotional well-being. 

Poor sleep quality can impair brain development, leading to attention deficit disorders, learning difficulties, and behavioral problems. 

Additionally, untreated sleep apnea can have serious long-term effects on cardiovascular health, increasing the risk of heart disease and other chronic conditions.


The Importance of Early Intervention

Untreated tongue-tie can have far-reaching consequences for children and adults, impacting various aspects of health and well-being. Addressing it early in life can prevent or mitigate many of the complications associated with untreated tongue-tie. 

By releasing the restrictive tissue, children can experience improvements in feeding, speech, sleep quality, and overall well-being. Early intervention not only improves outcomes but also reduces the need for costly interventions such as speech therapy, feeding therapy, and treatment for sleep-related disorders.

If you suspect that your child may have tongue tie, give us a call on (954) 505-7378 to explore treatment options and ensure the best possible outcomes for your child’s oral development.