Tether-Berg or Tether-Floe This PDF is a wonderful description to why Tongue Tie Release is not the whole answer to breastfeeding issues.
Frequently Asked Questions
What happens at a consultation?
First and foremost at the consult will be the assessment of your "Team". You must have an IBCLC as well as a bodyworker or chiropractor who is versed in Oral Dysfunction to help your baby during the preparation for release and afterward. This team approach is imperative in order to help you and your baby overcome the issues related to the feeding difficulties that brought you to us. The consultation consistent of an "intake" of your baby's history (birth and feeding) as well as any chief complaints or difficulties you or your little one might be having. Then an oral examination is done to determine if there are "Ties" present. Once that determination is made, a treatment plan is formulated to address your goals.
The consultation is also the time to discuss pain management (whether it is conventional medication or natural / homeopathic remedies) post op exercises and adequate preparation for the procedure. Plans for neurological integration and optimization of function are also created for the post op period.
Will the procedure be done the same day?
Procedures can be done the same day in children under the age of 2 years old. In children 2 years or older, a consultation must be done prior to the release appointment. If you are traveling a distance, consultations may be done via Skype initially so that the release appointment can be properly planned.
Are parents allowed in the room?
Fetzik Dentistry's office policy is that parents are not permitted to be in the room while the laser is in use. While we understand that other offices might allow this, we adhere to guidelines that require only trained personnel to be around the laser while it is in use. If this is a concern for you and you are not comfortable with this policy, please choose an office setting with policies that match your convictions. We respect your decision to choose the right environment for your family.
How long does the procedure take?
The procedure is very short. Your baby will be with our qualified staff for only about 5 minutes. We take pre-op photos, apply eyewear, do the procedure and take more photos. The actual time using the laser is short; about 5 seconds per site. Most of the time in the room is spent preparing to start and taking photos. Your baby is returned to you quickly for breastfeeding and comfort as well as the administration of the pain management of your choice.
What type of anesthetic is used?
Infants are given a topical (benzocaine free) cream, which is placed on the sites to be lasered prior to the procedure. Children over the ages of 12 + months receive topical anesthetic as well as possibly an injectable local anesthetic to the sites to be lasered. Rescue Remedy (a Bach Flower Essence) is often used (provided by the parents) to help calm and relax both Mom and Baby.
Depending on the age and weight of the child, a liquid Valium dose can be given orally to help further relax a child. This would be determined during the consultation and requires preparation by withholding certain liquids and food.
In select situations, parents may choose to have conscious IV sedation (twilight sleep) for a child who requires additional dental procedures. Careful thought is given to these scenarios and are thoroughly discussed during the consultation with both risks and benefits presented.
What are the risks of laser frenectomy?
There are 3 basic risks of the procedure. These risks are present with any procedure where skin is broken.
Bleeding. Bleeding is rare given the nature of the laser to cauterize the site as it works. During the healing phase, there may be some bleeding depending on how much inflammation the child has in response to the procedure.
Infection. For the breastfed baby, infection is rare. Infection rates are low in parents who are careful with cleanliness during the care of the site and whose child has a good immune system.
Scarring. Because we do not know the healing nature of the child, it is impossible to know who will scar. Genetics and family healing tendencies play heavily into whether or not someone scars. The laser use and the Dr.'s technique are all geared toward preventing as much scarring as possible. Also paying close attention to post op exercises helps with tissue healing and prevention of scarring.
How long will it be before my baby's function / symptom(s) improves?
Improvement varies from baby to baby. Since every child presents in a different way, every child improves at a different rate. The goal at Fetzik Dentistry is to create a plan around your baby to maximize optimal function and healing within the 3 weeks after the procedure. If close attention is paid to the site healing and the restoration of function, then the potential of the resolution of presenting symptoms is very good within that time frame. Be SURE to read the above article on the Tether-berg Tether-Floe.
How do I follow up with your office?
With your procedure, you receive 2 follow up visits; one at 1 week and 1 at the 3 week mark. After the procedure, you may make these appointments. These visits are to check the site for proper healing and review how things are going on the way to 'optimal'. If your baby requires "bodywork" or CFT (a.k.a. Gillespie Approach) work with the myofunctional therapist, then that is charged separately.
When are we "done" with your office?
The philosophy at Fetzik Dentistry, is that we are here for you to help you reach your breastfeeding goals. We are here for you over the long haul to restore your breastfeeding relationship whether that 'work' is done in our office or through a referral that we make to another practitioner. If you continue to have issues with breastfeeding or feeding in general past the 3 week recovery period, we are happy to visit with you and consider other referrals or courses of action.
Fetzik Dentistry 2548 N Maize Court Suite 100 Wichita, Kansas 67205