Home / My Blog / A Team Approach to Treating Tongue-Ties

Tongue-ties have become mainstream. Until recently, being tongue-tied was a condition that only a few myofunctional therapists and doctors were talking about. Few of my patients had heard about it. But I’m happy to say that’s all changed!

Awareness of this subject has grown dramatically. I’m now seeing so many tongue-tied patients reaching out to me on their own, or being referred to my practice by dentists and doctors.

Tongue-Ties

One thing that’s become very clear to me over the years is that only a multidisciplinary approach is truly effective at addressing and treating tongue-ties.

What do I mean by that? Well, if you just surgically release a tongue-tie without doing myofunctional therapy before and after the procedure, the results will never be optimal. Conversely, you can’t just do exercises and hope that the tongue-tie will go away or that the related symptoms will resolve.

I’ve seen a number of patients who didn’t know that they had to do the exercises in conjunction with the release. When they reach out to me after having the procedure, they’re far behind where they should be in terms of their progress, and their recovery and long-term results are affected. This is because the mouth is very good at healing, and the body will often revert to the patterns learned and ingrained over many years of dysfunction. Doing myofunctional therapy before and after the release is just like doing physical therapy after an operation.

The Team Approach Matters!

Treating a tongue-tie requires a team, and that team has to work closely together in order to coordinate the myofunctional therapy exercises with the tongue-tie release procedure.

The good news is that more and more of the doctors performing the procedure are insisting that their patients work with a myofunctional therapist before they’ll go ahead and do the release.

A great example of the team approach to tongue-ties can be found at The Breathe Institute in Los Angeles.

Dr. Soroush Zaghi at The Breathe Institute is one of the leading surgeons working with tongue-ties and other tethered oral tissues such as lip-ties. He’s very focused on integrating myofunctional therapy into his practice, so much so that he has an in-house myofunctional therapy team.

I recently visited Dr. Zaghi to take his course on the functional frenulopasty release technique he’s introduced. While I was in Los Angeles, we filmed this three-way discussion with Dr. Zaghi and myofunctional therapist Sanda Valcu-Pinkerton, who’s the Myofunctional Therapy Director at The Breathe Institute. In the video below, we go into detail as to why the team approach to tongue-ties is so important to a successful long-term outcome. I think this discussion will be beneficial for patients and parents alike.

Working With A Myofunctional Therapist

If you’re dealing with tongue-ties in your family, you don’t need to work through the entire process on your own.

A good myofunctional therapist will help you to find the right doctor to perform the tongue-tie release procedure, show you the exercises to do before and after the procedure to stop the tongue-tie from reattaching, and take you through a comprehensive program to retrain your oral and facial muscles for a lifetime of good health. Most importantly, they’ll help you make the team approach reality in your treatment. Done right, the results of this procedure can be life changing.

Some Tongue-Tie Resources

Here are some helpful resources that’ll help you understand more about tongue-ties:

A tongue-tie infographic I created.

An article on my site – What’s a Posterior Tongue-Tie?

All the tongue-tie videos on my YouTube channel

An article about tongue-ties I wrote for Ask The Dentist

My interview about tongue-ties with Dr. Daniel Lopez D.O.

An article on my site – Tongue-Ties and Epigenetics

 
 

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