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Lip and tongue ties are common conditions that can affect infants, often causing breastfeeding difficulties and other oral health issues. These conditions occur when the frenulum, the band of tissue that connects the lips or tongue to the gums, is too tight or restricts movement. Recognizing the signs of lip or tongue ties early on is crucial for prompt diagnosis and treatment. At the South Carolina Tongue Tie Center, we specialize in diagnosing and treating lip and tongue ties to ensure optimal oral function and development in infants. The following are common signs of lip or tongue ties in infants.

Difficulty Breastfeeding

One of the most common signs of lip or tongue ties in infants is difficulty breastfeeding. Infants with lip or tongue ties may struggle to latch onto the breast properly, leading to ineffective feeding, poor weight gain, and maternal nipple pain or damage. They may also exhibit symptoms such as clicking noises while feeding, frequent feedings with short durations, or prolonged feeding sessions due to inefficient milk transfer.

Inadequate Weight Gain

Infants with untreated lip or tongue ties may experience inadequate weight gain or failure to thrive. Difficulty breastfeeding can result in insufficient milk intake, leading to slow weight gain or weight loss over time. Parents should monitor their infant’s growth and consult with a lactation consultant or healthcare provider if they have concerns about their baby’s feeding habits or weight gain.

Reflux or Colic Symptoms

Lip or tongue ties can contribute to gastrointestinal issues in infants, including reflux or colic symptoms. These conditions may arise due to excessive air intake during feeding, inefficient milk transfer, or swallowing difficulties associated with lip or tongue ties. Infants with lip or tongue ties may exhibit signs of reflux, such as frequent spitting up, arching of the back, or discomfort after feeding. Addressing the underlying lip or tongue tie may help alleviate these symptoms and improve feeding outcomes.

Difficulty Bottle Feeding

While lip and tongue ties primarily affect breastfeeding infants, they can also impact bottle feeding. Infants with lip or tongue ties may struggle to create a proper seal around the bottle nipple, leading to milk leakage, gulping or choking during feedings. Parents may notice that their baby takes longer to finish a bottle, displays signs of frustration or fatigue while feeding, or exhibits a preference for specific bottle nipples or feeding positions.

Speech and Oral Development Concerns

Untreated lip or tongue ties can affect speech and oral development as infants grow older. These conditions may contribute to speech delays, articulation difficulties or oral motor challenges in children. Parents should monitor their child’s speech and language development milestones and seek evaluation by a speech-language pathologist or pediatric dentist if they have concerns about their child’s communication skills or oral function.

Recognizing the signs of lip or tongue ties in infants is essential for early intervention and appropriate management of these conditions. If you suspect that your baby may have a lip or tongue tie, consult with a qualified healthcare provider or pediatric specialist for evaluation and treatment options. At the South Carolina Tongue Tie Center, we are dedicated to providing compassionate care and comprehensive services to support optimal oral function and development in infants. Contact us today to learn more about our lip and tongue tie evaluation and treatments, including painless tongue and lip tie removal at our clinic in Charleston.

Posted on behalf of South Carolina Tongue Tie Center

538 Savannah Hwy
Charleston, SC 29407

Phone: 843-654-0459


Monday - Thursday: 8am - 5pm
Friday: 8am - 2pm

Our Patient Reviews

South Carolina Tongue Tie Center

4.7 / 5.0

Based on 5 reviews

  • Talia H.

    Great experience with my visit to Dr. McPhearson and Carrie, hygienist. Dr. McPhearson is so patient, kind, and a perfectionist. She cares deeply that you have a great dental visit every time.

  • Maham A.

    I saw Dr. Caitlin McPherson and she is absolutely amazing. Not only does she make sure that everything is beautiful and functional, but she also treats every patient and their concerns with the utmost kindness.

  • Frankie W.

    Dr. McPherson is absolutely the best I highly recommend her and her team for all of your dental needs.

  • Phillip R.

    Everyone is so nice and they all seem to have good comradery. Mallory, Taylor, and Dr. Caitlin McPherson definitely know what they're doing!

  • Kyle A.

    The staff is always friendly & Dr McPherson does a great job every time!

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