Gentle and expert tongue tie treatment

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Dr. Wright performs oral restriction services at
Chattanooga Tongue Tie Center

Due to the great needs for oral restriction services in our communicty Dr. Wright is excited to be opening Chattanooga Tongue Tie Center to better serve the babies, moms and individuals that our suffering from the effects of having tethered oral tissues that restrict function. Chattanooga Tongue Tie Center website to come.

The Process

1. Review

An exam will indicate whether your child will benefit from a tongue or lip tie treatment. We don’t perform unnecessary procedures. We take the time to talk it through together and explain why we feel your child does or does not need a procedure.

2. Release

Using a state-of-the-art dental laser, we easily release ties in a 10-15 second procedure, usually with minimal to no bleeding. You’ll be surprised how quick and easy it is.

3. Recover

Babies are able to go to mom immediately following the procedure and nurse if needed. The recovery only takes minutes and children can resume normal functioning almost immediately.

Symptoms of Tongue and Lip Ties


  • Difficulty eating
  • Poor weight gain
  • Reflux or frequent spitting up
  • Frequent gassiness and fussiness
  • Clicking or smacking noises when eating
  • Dribbling milk out of mouth
  • Frustration when eating
  • Inability to hold a pacifier
  • Prolonged nursing or bottle-feeding sessions


  • Painful nursing
  • Creased or flattened nipples
  • Blistered or cut nipples
  • Incomplete breast drainage
  • Plugged ducts or mastiti
  • Inability to nurse without using a nipple shield
  • Decreased milk supply

What are Tongue and Lip Ties?

Tongue ties are a small band of tissue that connects the tongue too tightly to the floor of the mouth. In infants this can hinder the tongue from reaching their palate which is necessary for proper latch while breast feeding.

Lip ties occur most commonly the upper lip and have to do with a band of tissue that tethers the lip. If the connection is too tight it will limit proper flange which can hinder proper latch. For older individuals with a tongue tie, speech and hindrance of proper oral hygiene common. Only treat ties that limit normal function require treatment. We work with an excellent lactation consultant before and after the procedure. For older children, We recommend scheduling follow-up care with speech therapists.

When Dr. Wright and others (pediatricians, lactation consultants, speech therapists) diagnose a tongue or lip tie that is causeing a functional problem a short one minute procedure with a soft tissue laser is performed to completely remove the tethered tissue. While not all results are immediate, many nursing moms see and feel the difference right away. In the same way some older patients that suffer from speech impediments will need time and continued speech therapy to help reestablish proper muscle memory, but many others experience almost immediate improvement.

Treatment for Children and Adolescents

There are many children who have difficulties related to tongue-ties and lip-ties, but unfortunately, these conditions are often not identified until later in life. They can cause speech and feeding difficulties, sleep issues, and a wide-range of other concerns.

If your child is unable to touch the roof of the mouth with his or her tongue when opening widely, is struggling with speech delay, or speech issues that aren’t resolving, has difficulty eating or getting a good night’s sleep, consider getting an evaluation.

A tongue restriction affects speech differently in each individual. Some children with a to-the-tip tie can articulate well (but may struggle with increased effort when speaking). Other children, with a less visible or posterior tie, may have a speech delay or difficulty producing the sounds for L, R, T, D, N, TH, SH, and Z. We have seen that many tongue-tied children begin saying new words even just hours or days after the release! Not every child will have immediate results, but we often see drastic improvement.

A tongue-tied child will often grind his or her teeth at night, snore, or experience other sleep-disordered breathing problems. Releasing a tongue-tie can help a child to sleep more soundly because the tongue will be able to rest on the palate, as it was designed to do, rather than falling back to narrow or block the child’s airway. Sleep-disordered breathing can cause frequent waking, restlessness, bed-wetting, failure to feel refreshed upon waking and accompanying difficulty focusing (which is sometimes misdiagnosed as ADD or ADHD).

Sometimes a child will be seen by multiple specialists to try to remedy a problem that could actually be quickly be solved with a quick tie release treatment. In addition, children with tongue-ties often have a history of multiple ear infections and needing ear tubes. They may have had tonsils and adenoids removed. All of these can be complicated by the mouth-breathing that frequently occurs in tongue-tied individuals. We have found that when a tongue-tie is treated, sleep can improve dramatically.

“I had trouble/pain nursing my newborn along with other signs that indicated he had a lip tie. …it’s a very fast procedure. I had no pain nursing immediately after the procedure and have continued to see significant improvements since. Such a difference! Today we just had our 1 week follow up and the baby boy is doing great! It was definitely the right thing to do and am so happy I had Dr. Wright and his team do it!. Top notch care; happy baby, happy mama. Thank you Dr. Wright!”

Amanda PattonTop notch care; happy baby, happy mama.

We have four kiddos ages 6, 4, 1 and 1 month. After 3 cleanings, 8 cavity repairs and 2 tongue ties done we can highly recommend Dr. Wright!!! We have had a great experience here with all the different procedures. I really appreciate how patient and gentle Dr. Wright is! My very medically adverse 4 year old was relaxed having her tongue tie done. He took the time "to do" the whole procedure on my daughter's Miss Piggy during one of her happy visits so she could understand what to expect. The staff really go out of their way to make sure your child has a positive experience. Thank you everyone at Wright Pediatric Dentistry!

Becca MillerThe staff really go out of their way to make sure your child has a positive experience.