Dr. Sabo uses the Hazelbaker Assessment Tool for Lingual Frenulum Function (HATLFF) as a quantitative assessment of each individual child's condition. If Dr. Sabo sees a need for a release of the lip and/or tongue tie, she uses a topical jelly followed by a few drops of local anesthetic to the area. This will keep baby comfortable during the procedure and for a short time afterwards. We have fashionable protective eyewear for baby and parent to wear, and if baby is comfortable with a particular blanket or swaddle, we encourage you to bring that to the appointment as well.
If immediate release is needed to support breastfeeding. Dr. Sabo uses a laser to make the procedure quick and very simple. The Diode laser will release and cauterize the tissue as it works, making for a very clean surgical site and minimal bleeding.
The procedure is very quick! Most little ones are more irritated by the light and having someone in their personal space than with the actual procedure. Once we are done, they are quickly back to smiles again. We encourage immediate breast feeding as a comfort to baby and as well to check and make sure that the release is translating into a successful latch.
FUNTIONAL RELEASE WITH SUTURES
If you and/or your little one is old enough to coordinate tongue posture, we prefer to start with training the tongue with an Orofacial Myologist. We have found in all cases this training PRIOR to release and AFTER release leads to a much improved result. This means less chance for the need for future revisions, and in some cases, once the muscles are coordinated correctly through the therapy, no surgical release is even needed in the first place.
If after therapy a release is still needed, your little one will pay a game of freeze with their tongue held in the correct position during the release. This allows Dr. Sabo to be sure that the release is balanced and sufficient enough to result in the best outcome. Sutures are placed where the release is made to help with post-operative comfort and decrease re-attachment of the tissues.
POST OPERATIVE CARE
After the procedure, your job begins to help maintain the release. Please read and follow closely the post-operative care instructions you are given at your appointment. If the surgical areas are not stretched during the first 4 weeks post-op, the tissues could re-attach and call for further procedures.