Frenectomy is a procedure frequently done in dentistry.
There are different muscle attachments in the lower and upper jaw that need to be removed under different circumstances. A frenectomy is performed to compress the suspected muscle and reduce its effect on the oral cavity.
Although there are several muscles, it is not uncommon for all but certain pairs to need to be relaxed. The most common areas are between the two upper middle front teeth, between the lower middle teeth, and under the tongue.
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Let’s look at each area individually and determine why each requires this procedure.
1. Between the upper middle teeth: This muscle attaches the upper lip to the gum tissue near the upper middle teeth. There are 2 possible reasons why this muscle requires this procedure.
- As the child grows, the slight attachment of a muscle that attaches to the gum tissue between the teeth can prevent the two middle teeth from moving together in their normal position into adulthood. Surgery allows the teeth to move into their natural positions. Orthodontics may be needed to assist in positioning.
- Low muscle localization that persists into adulthood can continuously pull the gum tissue between the upper middle teeth. This can lead to gum recession, leaving unaesthetic black spaces between the affected teeth. Timely surgical intervention can prevent this phenomenon.
2. Bondage Under Tongue: This situation is also known as “tongue-tied” or “ankyloglossia”. Here the muscles attach the tongue to the floor of the mouth and in severe cases restrict tongue movement, potentially affecting speech. Frenectomy can result in increased tongue and speech mobility.