A mucous membrane called the frenulum is centered on the underside of a baby’s tongue and attaches the tongue to the floor of the mouth.
A defect like this can make it look as if the baby has a short tongue or sometimes no “free tongue “. A tongue-tied baby might have some problems moving the tongue up and down and side to side. A tight or short frenulum or tongue-tie can make it difficult for a baby to feed at the breast.
A baby cannot bring the tongue forward enough to get the nipple and areola into his/her mouth. Newborn tongue tied babies can sometimes breastfeed without problems, as long as a proper latch can be established.
Sucking is only possible with the forward movement of the jaw and tongue, and the tongue helps for the seal during breastfeeding. In the case of a baby who has this problem, the movement is restricted and, therefore, causes some sucking problems.
Nipple pain is the first sign of a tongue tie during breastfeeding.
Between 2 – 4% of all babies are born with tongue ties. Breastfeeding a tongue tied baby can be very frustrating, especially if you don’t know that your baby has this problem.
A breastfeeding relationship is not trouble-free for everyone. So, problems might have zero to do with tongue-tie, in which case your midwife, health visitor or breastfeeding consultant should still be able to help you and your baby.
If you and your little one are experiencing at least three of these symptoms mentioned above, and those symptoms are not GONE by the time your baby is 1 week old, it is time to see a specialist, who is knowledgeable about the frenotomy procedure. (snipping the skin under the tongue, to free the tongue)
Other pages on “breastfeeding-problems” with pages related to this page on tongue tie breastfeeding
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Site by BFeeding Mamma, Tracy Behr. Currently studying through Child birth International (CBC, CBD). Also an accomplished author and Mommy of two.