Frenectomy is a simple, short oral surgery procedure conducted in office with a water-based laser. It eliminates the presence of a frenum, a connective tissue in the mouth. There are 2 types of frenum in the mouth. A labial frenum is the tissue that connects the inside of the upper lip to the center of the gums between the two upper front teeth. A lingual frenum is the connective tissue between the underside of the tongue, connecting the bottom of the mouth to the area behind the teeth. A frenectomy eliminates the frenum.

There are different reasons for children to have a frenectomy. For Infants reasons may include: 

  • Infant is not gaining weight 
  • Latch is shallow/infant falls off frequently 
  • Infant is gassy or clicking noises are prominent
  • Feedings are causing mom discomfort/pain

In toddlers between the ages of 18 Months - 5 Years old the most common reason is that the frenum does not allow clearance of food/plaque and difficult to clean the upper teeth, which can potentially cause cavities.

Sometimes in children between 5 - 7 Years old the frenum will cause a space between upper front incisors. It is ideal to remove one year before teeth come in. This gives the front teeth the best chance to come in without a space.

The procedure is quick and simple, usually a same-day consultation and treatment. For toddlers the child will be given oral sedation before the procedure begins. For older children, there is an option to have oral sedation, Nitrous Oxide or in some cases both. After the child has been sedated, the Dentist will apply a topical anesthetic gel on frenum. Next, a local anesthetic administered prior to procedure with an injection. Then, a soft tissue laser will be used in order to cauterize blood vessel and nerve endings. Utilizing Soft Tissue Laser will reduce the risk for infection and minimize bleeding during and after the procedure.  

After the Procedure

What to Expect

Numbness will wear off within 2 - 3 hours after procedure. Do not be alarmed if latching is difficult at first you may have to help flange the upper lip especially while the lip is numb. Tylenol may be given, but please consult doctor for specific dosage. The wound areas may appear white or yellowish.  This is normal and is not an indication of infection. Full healing usually takes between 2-3 weeks.

Wound Care Instructions

For infants and toddlers, to aid in the healing process, we recommend using Peroxyl for the first 4 days after each feeding. Peroxyl is a disinfectant oral cleanser that can be applied to the surgical area with a cotton swab. For older children, warm salt water rinses can be used to help expedite healing.

Proper Stretching

Stretches should be completed until the 2 week follow up appointment. Completing stretches are crucial to prevent reattachment. The best time to perform stretches is right before each feeding. For optimal results, stretches should be performed 4 to 6 times a day for several seconds each time. Minor bleeding may happen the first few days and is not cause for concern

Mandibular (Lingual) Tongue Tie stretches

Place your finger under lip and lift the lip up until you feel resistance. 

Then gently rub the area from side to side for several seconds.

1. Saturate index finger/cotton swab with Peroxyl Oral Cleanser (after feedings).

 2 weeks after procedure

Mandibular (Lingual) Tongue Tie stretches

Push inward and lift tongue up in order to stretch fold of diamond (It is optional to use cotton tip swabs). Stretch the opening and massage the wound.  Improper stretching can cause wound to reattach.

Proper Stretching Technique

Improper Stretching Technique

Reason to call after procedure 

  • Excessive bleeding: If bleeding is continuous and is saturating gauze for 20 minutes.
  • Wound swelling

Follow Up

Follow up appointment will be scheduled 2 weeks after procedure. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at any time. Our emergency line will be available after hours for your

Contact Us

East Location
2801-J Eubank Blvd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87112
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
West Location
9201 & 9211 Eagle Ranch Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87114