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Frenotomy? Frenectomy? What’s the Difference?

September 9, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — floridatongue @ 8:54 am
closeup of a person’s frenulum

One of the nice things about having a dentist you can trust with your child’s healthcare is having someone who can help you navigate some of the more complicated aspects of the field. When you start to dig in yourself, it may almost seem like they’ve intentionally tried to make dentistry confusing.

For example, there are two procedures, frenotomy and frenectomy. They sound similar, and are kind of similar, but are distinct in a way that makes them well-suited to different patients. If you want to know more about these treatments, and the difference between them, here’s some information you may find useful.

What Connects Frenotomies and Frenectomies?

Both frenotomies and frenectomies are procedures performed on the frenulum, which is a thin bit of tissue that connects the tongue and the mouth. If you curl your tongue back in your mouth, you may even be able to feel it.

In some situations, the frenulum is a bit too thick. This leads kids to become “tongue tied,” causing issues with breastfeeding and talking.

Both frenotomies and frenectomies are treatments used to fix a thick frenulum, though how they go about doing so is slightly different from each other.

What’s the Difference?

The difference is simple: frenectomies involve removing the frenulum completely, while frenotomies involve just snipping the frenulum to allow a little bit more mobility. Which one is best for your child comes down to the particulars of their situation.

How are they Done?

In some cases, frenectomies and frenotomies are done with a scalpel. There will be some mild bleeding, but the procedure itself is completely painless and the wound should close quickly, without stitches.

Some practices even make use of a soft tissue laser, which results in less bleeding and even faster recovery. In either situation, the procedure can make a massive difference in the quality of your child’s health, preventing a lot of problems.

About the Author

Dr. Maggie Davis is an expert pediatric dentist, but she’s also a mother who understands how stressful it can be to have their kids undergo any kind of procedure. That’s why she brings a philosophy of comfort and compassion to all of her work, and it feels enormously satisfying to see children brought to excellent health. Dr. Davis is a Board-Certified Pediatric Dentist and Diplomate in the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, studying with the nation’s best Pediatric Dentists and Laser Clinicians.

If you have any questions about frenectomies, we can be reached at our website or by phone at (727) 786-7551.

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