J was born tongue-tied. Meaning that the little piece of skin under your tongue that attaches the bottom of your tongue to the floor of your mouth was attached all the way to the tip of his little tongue. The doc told us it was genetic. Although neither the Hubs or I can figure out who it came from. Either way, the doc said that getting it snipped wasn’t mandatory and many kids do just fine. However we decided it was better for J to have it taken care of as soon as possible. Just like circumcision, it would be a pretty quick and painless procedure. The doc also told us that being tongue-tied could complicate breastfeeding. And being a new mama, that was proving to be hard to get started as it was. I wanted to breastfeed, and that was another reason we chose to get it taken care of.
I don’t think there are any cons to getting the procedure done. At least none that I’ve come across in my research on it. I don’t remember what the chances of tongue-tie are in babies either, but I’d never heard of it before so I assume they are pretty slim. The ENT who did the snipping told us that a lot of times kiddos who don’t have the procedure end up ripping the skin themselves when they trip and fall during their younger years. Ick. Can’t imagine that would feel great! ENT also said that tongue-tie could cause problems later in life if J ever wanted to play an instrument or that it may affect his speech, so he (without actually saying it) told us that it was better to get it taken care of. So we did.
The procedure was pretty quick but it wasn’t fun to watch. Doc had us hold J down while he stuck a spork looking thing under his tongue and then made a quick snip with the scissors. For me it was worse than the circumcision though, they don’t numb them up for the tongue-snip procedure since there aren’t any nerves in that little piece of skin. He sure screamed though…probably more from being held down than anything but it still pulls at your heartstrings, especially as a new parent with a 2 week old. Doc had me nurse him for a few minutes to get the bleeding to stop and in about 5 minutes he was perfectly fine.
Now that J is old enough to really stick out his tongue in response to one of us doing the same thing, it appears that his tongue still isn’t quite normal. He can’t stick it out very far, and the tip isn’t rounded when he does. I’m sure it won’t be a big issue, but still makes you worry that other things could be lingering for the future. The Hubs jokes that he has a short tongue too.
It’s something I’ll mention to the pediatrician when we see him at J’s 1 year appointment, but I’m not sure I”ll get more than an “it’ll be fine” answer. Not sure there is any other answer really. I’m probably just thinking too much into it. But being a mama means over thinking things
some times always.
pic courtesy of: http://www.breastfeedingbasics.com/articles/tongue-tie