All about Lip tie

 
Contributed by : Palak Vyas, Ravina Sewani   
All about Lip tie

Here are Lip Tie Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment, and Prevention.

Lip tie is a condition where the underside of the upper lip tethers to the top of the gum with a skin tag. The piece of tissue behind your upper lip is called the frenulum. When these membranes are too thick or too stiff, they can keep the upper lip from moving freely. This condition is called a lip tie. Lip tie isn’t dangerous for babies, as long as they’re gaining weight according to their paediatrician’s guidelines. But lip tie, once diagnosed, is easy to correct.


A baby with a tongue tie may not necessarily have a lip tie. Babies with lip tie may face challenges to breastfeed or bottle-feed, as it restricts the baby from stretching the lips to open the mouth wide.


Causes: The causes of lip tie are still unknown.


Lip tie symptoms:

  • Difficulty in breastfeeding is one of the most common indications that your child may have a lip tie or tongue tie.
  • Struggling to latch on to the breast
  • Difficulty breathing during feeding
  • Making a clicking sound while nursing
  • Falling asleep often during nursing
  • Acting extremely fatigued by nursing
  • Slow weight gain or lack of weight gain
  • Colic


If a child has a lip tie and you’re a breastfeeding mother, you may experience:

  • Pain during or after breastfeeding
  • Breasts that feel engorged even right after nursing
  • Blocked milk ducts or mastitis
  • Fatigue from breastfeeding constantly even though your child never seems to be full


Babies who have a severe lip or tongue-tie may go on to have difficulty eating from a spoon or eating finger foods, according to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Lip ties don’t have as many complications later in life. Some paediatricians believe that an untreated lip tie can lead to a higher likelihood of tooth decay for toddlers.


Diagnosis: A lip tie is diagnosed through a physical exam. Most paediatricians can diagnose a lip tie based on its appearance.


Treatment:

A lip tie can be treated on the basis of the class of lip tie. Whether it is a class 1, class 2, class 3 or class 4. It can also be fibrous, fleshy, thick or thin depending upon the texture of the skin fold.


Manual treatment: For class 1 and class 2 lip ties, the baby doesn’t need any formal treatment. Parents have to gently slide the finger underneath the upper lip to stretch frenulum tissue. This type of manual practice can gradually release the tightness of the tissue and the child will have normal mobility of the upper lip.


Frenectomy: This is a small surgical procedure where the frenulum is cut through an operation. A frenulum is a small fold of tissue that prevents an organ in the body from moving too far. Doctors usually use laser technology to cut the frenulum and so it is called laser frenectomy. General anaesthesia is not used; instead, a local topical numbing agent is applied to the frenulum. In this procedure, a child may or may not require stitches. The procedure hardly takes a few minutes to complete. Babies can experience mild pain post the procedure. Stay vigilant for any signs of swelling or bleeding from the lips and contact the doctor immediately.


Prevention: Lip tie cannot be prevented.




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