What does the procedure involve?
You must ensure your baby has received either the vitamin K injection at birth or at least 2 doses of oral vitamin K before I can perform the procedure.
You will be asked to bring your baby to the appointment ideally settled but willing to feed immediately post procedure.
Once you have signed the consent form allowing me to assess and treat your baby if appropriate, I will perform a thorough oral assessment to confirm a tongue tie.
To prevent the risks of infection I wear disposable gloves. The scissors used to divide the tongue tie are single use and sterile. The procedure itself takes no more than a few seconds. Gauze is applied to the wound site to absorb the tiny amount of blood and your baby is brought straight to mum for feeding. Feeding is important in soothing your baby and helps in assessing any immediate improvement to feeding. Breastfeeding mothers will be supported with positioning and attachment.
I may also recommend additional support or treatments. (See below) Once your baby has completed a feed I will check their mouth to confirm bleeding has stopped before you are discharged home.
What symptoms might I see if my baby is tongue tied?
Your baby may lose more weight than expected in the first few days after birth. Babies should have reached their birthweight by two weeks. Tongue tied babies can take much longer. Babies with tongue tie can have slow weight gain, static growth or continued weight loss, sometimes dropping percentiles.
Your baby may tire very quickly during feeding, spend a long time feeding & still be unsettled afterwards or want to constantly feed. Hiccups, and wind are very common in tongue tied babies.
If you are bottle feeding your baby may take a long time to complete a feed, dribble milk out the sides of their mouth, choke or splutter and be very noisy when feeding
I'm not sure if my baby is tongue tied
Will it hurt my baby?
Parents who have brought their baby to me have themselves had a tongue tie division as an adult. They felt it as nothing more than a sting similar to if you accidentally cut yourself for example. The procedure takes just a few seconds. Feeding and closeness with a parent is a wonderful way to soothe your baby both immediately after the division and in the couple of days afterwards. Older babies may benefit from paracetamol. Ensure you follow guidance from the manufacturers.
What additional support or treatments might you suggest?
What is the recovery time after the procedure?
What follow up support do you provide?
Parents can contact me Monday to Saturday 8am – 6pm if they have questions or concerns. I follow up all parents by text 2-3 days after their appointment. Depending on the situation I may continue to follow up parents for as long as is necessary. Sometimes up to 4 weeks after the procedure. For parents who would like a 1:1 follow up with me, I offer support for a small additional charge.
Do you divide lip ties?
What are the benefits of a private tongue tie division service?
Accessing my services means that your appointment is personal & tailored to the needs of you and your baby. No two mums & babies are the same.
Whilst some NHS trusts provide a tongue tie division service there are many that don’t and this can lead to longer waiting times. For a mum struggling with feeding this can be the make or break as to whether she continues breastfeeding.
Some hospitals will divide anterior tongue ties but not posterior ones. Some only divide tongue ties in breastfed babies up to a few weeks of age. Some will only divide if there are concerns over baby’s weight. In some hospitals babies remain in their car seats for the procedure and after a few minutes you are allowed home. Not all hospitals provide feeding support immediately post division and it’s not unusual not to receive any follow up.
The benefits of a private consultation with me include the option of a clinic appointment or a home visit. It’s a 1:1 appointment usually within a few days of contact. Sometimes I can see parents the following day.
I am a registered midwife and lactation consultant so you have access to skilled feeding support after the division. Your appointment will last around an hour. I will take a full feeding history from you, discuss tongue tie in greater detail, and you will be given the opportunity to ask questions. You will be supported with feeding immediately post division and together we will develop a feeding plan.
All parents receive telephone follow up after a couple of days. I am available 6 days a week so you can contact me for support and to discuss any questions or concerns you might have. I also provide a follow appointment service for ongoing feeding support or possible further division.