Why Tongue-Ties in Adulthood are a Big Deal

adult tongue tie

San Francisco and Marin CA

Ankyloglossia, commonly known as a tongue tie or lip tie, is a condition that restricts the tongue or the oral facial musculature. As a result, breathing, eating, and speaking may be affected. If this condition goes unresolved, it may also result in several additional oral or overall issues as an adult. If you think your child has a tongue tie, it’s critical to consult our Bay Area dentists that treat tongue ties at Glen Park Dental since this problem won’t go away on its own over time. Today on the blog, we share why tongue ties in adulthood are a big deal and the problems that could arise in maturity if the condition remains untreated.

Unhealthy Teeth and Poor Oral Health

Ankyloglossia limits the tongue and lip’s ability to move, which can make it difficult to swallow or correctly move the tongue. Our Marin dentists that fix tongue ties explain that the tongue’s inability to move has an impact on salivation in the mouth. This is due to the fact that many people with a tongue-tie exhibit open mouth posture, resulting in dry mouth. Patients with ankyloglossia are far more likely to develop cavities and potentially gum disease since saliva is essential for wiping away plaque and oral germs.

Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction

The positioning and growth of the teeth, as well as jaw development, are significantly influenced by the tongue’s movement during childhood. A tongue that is restricted from moving normally results in a smaller mouth, jaw, and palate. The temporomandibular joint, which links the mandible to the skull, may experience discomfort caused by a narrower or tiny jaw’s inability to move as well as it should. TMJ can cause excruciating neck and jaw pain, trouble moving the jaw, “locking” of the jaw, and a variety of other uncomfortable symptoms.

Sleep Apnea

The tongue and/or lips are impaired by ankyloglossia, which results in smaller-than-normal oral structures and airways. Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) may develop if the mouth tissue starts to sag. Our Marin sleep apnea dentists explain that OSA occurs when oral tissue completely closes the airway several times throughout the night, frequently for at least ten seconds. OSA makes it difficult to get a good night’s sleep and may raise your chances of having a heart attack or stroke.

Speech Issues

One of the most obvious problems associated with adult tongue ties is speech problems. It is exceedingly challenging to talk correctly when the tongue is tightly bound to the mouth and unable to move properly. Adults with tongue knots may have trouble making plosive sounds like “s,” and they may also lisp.

Tongue Tie Treatment in Marin, Oakland, and San Francisco, California

Tongue-ties in adults can be treated with laser dentistry, followed by a course of myofunctional therapy to help retrain the tongue and oral muscles to function properly. Adults may also need additional therapies to learn proper speech and swallowing patterns. Our experienced dentists at Glen Park Dental would be pleased to assess you and ensure that, if a tongue tie or lip tie is present, any problems are swiftly corrected with a minimally invasive laser technique. So, call our office at (415) 585-1500 or contact us online to request a consultation appointment to see if a tongue-tie release is right for you.