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  • Hila Bahari

Tongue-tied? Signs To Look For In Yourself And Your Child

Updated: Apr 5, 2022

Nora Zahgi


This is such an important topic, therefore I asked Dr. Nora Zahgi from the Breathe Institute in Los Angeles to share her insights and educate us some more on this subject. The below is her information.

Sometimes we would expect our Dentists or Pediatricians to check our mouths for something known as tethered oral tissues (TOTs), but the truth is not every health care provider has the knowledge and/or expertise in assessing and treating them.

Under each and every one of our tongues there is a band connecting the tongue to the floor of the mouth know has a lingual frenulum. Sometimes that band may be unusually short or thick making it restricted, or tied down. The medical term for a tongue-tie is Ankyloglossia. We also have frenulums under our lips and cheeks. In some cases, these are also restricted, known as a lip tie or buccal tie.

Babies with TOTs may have symptoms

at birth that could include:

  • Shallow latch

  • Gastrointestinal discomfort

  • Lip blisters

  • Clicking

  • Incomplete removal of milk from the breasts

  • Long, inefficient feeding sessions

  • Engorgement of the breasts

  • Bleeding/chapped nipples

  • Mastitis

  • Plugged ducts

  • Inability to latch

  • Low tongue posture

  • The inability of the tongue to contact the palate.

Sometimes restricted frenulums may be present at birth but cause no symptoms. As patients get older TOTs can contribute to:

  • Mouth breathing

  • Speech issues

  • Dental crowding

  • High/narrow palate

  • Sleep issues

  • Postural adaptation

  • Neck and shoulder tension

  • Bruxism, clenching, grinding

  • Reflux

  • Picky eating

  • Gagging

Check out Dr. Nora Zaghi and her work on instagram here.


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