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What do I need a Tongue-Tie release?

The un-tethered mobility of the tongue is required for optimal speech, chewing, swallowing, oral hygiene, and breathing functions, as well as for development of the skeletal structures of the jaw and the airway. Because the tongue plays such an important role in so many functions, restricted mobility of the tongue may lead to compensatory behaviors that may negatively affect nasal breathing and cause snoring due to low tongue posture, or contribute to chronic stress on the other muscles of the head and neck. The tongue also has connections to the whole body through a system of connective tissue known as fascia, and a restrictive tongue may place tension on the fascia networks causing neck tension, pain, and postural dysfunction. Our functional frenuloplasty approach honors the changes that occur during a tongue-tie release and prepares the body for acceptance and optimal healing post-treatment.

After the procedure

Patients should expect some mild swelling, pain, and/or discomfort as a normal process of wound healing. Pain is often controlled with over-the-counter pain medications, and other symptoms usually self-resolve over the course of 1-2 weeks with proper rest and myofunctional therapy. Possible (but very rare) complications of frenuloplasty may include bleeding, pain, numbness, failure of procedure, scarring, and injury to adjacent structures which may result in salivary gland dysfunction.

Our group is highly active in clinical research and committed to anything that we can do to provide our patients with the highest level of care. We are delighted by the opportunity to share our knowledge and experience to help inspire the field to move towards higher standards in the delivery of myofunctional and airway health.

Did you know?

Dr. Wallace is also fully trained and proctored by Dr. Soroush Zaghi and serves as The Breathe Institute Ambassador.

LightScalpel CO2 Laser

We are excited to announce that we now offer laser dentistry with the LightScalpel CO2 laser. This specialized device takes oral surgery to a whole new level. Using a concentrated beam of light, the laser vaporizes tissue as it seals blood vessels, resulting in a quicker recovery for patients.

What is LightScalpel Surgery?

Traditional surgery involves the use of a scalpel or scissors, which can damage tissue around the surgical site. The LightScalpel laser, however, uses a beam of light about the width of a human hair, which minimizes mechanical tissue trauma. The laser’s unique ability to vaporize or “erase” tissue is used to make incisions or remove unhealthy tissue. Its ultimate precision allows for only a few cells to be removed at a time, yet is powerful enough to remove large tissue masses or tumors.

Are LightScalpel Lasers Safe?

LightScalpel lasers are safe, as long as a trained physician follows the laser’s approved guidelines. The FDA has cleared the device for use on soft tissue, including in dentistry. When receiving laser dental treatment, you will be provided safety glasses to wear that shield your eyes from the laser beams.

Benefits of LightScalpel CO2 Laser:

  • Less Bleeding – The LightScalpel CO2 laser vaporizes tissue and seals blood vessels as it works. This reduces bleeding, which provides better visualization of the treatment area.
  • Less Swelling – The laser beams do not cause trauma to the surgical site. Also, because the laser seals blood and lymphatic vessels, it results in less post-operative swelling.
  • Less Discomfort – With the LightScalpel laser, there is minimal post-operative discomfort because there is no pressure placed on surrounding tissue.
  • Less Infection Risk – The laser produces a high-intensity light capable of destroying bacteria. This sanitizing effect reduces the risks of post-operative infection.
  • Less Invasive – Using pinpoint precision, the laser removes only a few cells at a time, which means it is less invasive than using traditional surgical methods.
  • Less Time – The LightScalpel laser helps maintain a drier surgical site, which allows the dentist to work more efficiently. Also, because there is little to no downtime following laser dental treatments, recovery time is much shorter. In many cases, patients may return to work or school on the same day as their procedure.
  • Reduced Risk of Scarring – Several studies conclude that CO2 surgical sites experience a reduced amount of myofibroblasts as compared to traditional surgical methods.

How does Palmetto Smiles of Beaufort use LightScalpel Laser?

This American-made device has been approved by the FDA for use in soft tissue surgical procedures. At Palmetto Smiles, LightScalpel CO2 laser is used for the following procedures:

  • Frenectomy – Releasing tongue- or lip-ties
  • Gingivectomy – Removal of excess or diseased gum tissue for the treatment of periodontitis
  • Gingivoplasty – Reshaping gum tissue to treat “gummy smile” or lengthen the appearance of teeth that are too short
  • Excision of Fibroma – Removal of benign fibroids or fibroid tumors
  • Biopsies – Removal of suspicious soft tissue, such as oral cancer, for further testing · Dental Implant Procedures – Removal of gum tissue for implant placement access

Palmetto Smiles provides oral surgical treatment using the most precise and safe technology available through the LightScalpel CO2 laser. Find out how LightScalpel CO2 laser could make a difference in your oral care by contacting Palmetto Smiles of Beaufort today at (843) 524-7645 or request a consultation here.