What is a Lip Tie in Babies and How to Diagnose It?

If you are a breastfeeding mom, then you most probably notice several things about your baby. If your toddler is nursing for a bit long, but never feels full, then it is a concerning thing. Some factors are responsible for this situation, including lip and tongue tie. In today’s blog, we’ll share symptoms, causes and treatment options for this condition. If you notice this type of problem in your infant, then you must read this blog.

What is a Lip Tie in Babies?

A lip tie happens when a piece of tissue known as the labial frenulum attaches the upper lip to the gums, and it is very tight and short. This condition makes it difficult to move the upper lip. To breastfeed, toddlers should be able to close their lips around the nipple. Babies must be able to hold the nipple completely into their mouth so that they can move their upper lip enough to hold the nipple.

Parents may notice this lip tie in babies or notice the baby can’t move his/her upper lip properly. It is neither a disease nor serious problem. If a baby doesn’t have a problem nursing, then there is no point to treat it.

How to Diagnose Lip Tie?

Generally, lip tie has a direct impact on the upper lip. Look at the middle part of the lip and then lift it. There is a band of tissue between the gum and the upper lip. If you find it difficult to lift the upper lip or your baby is not able to move the upper lip, then it might be a lip tie. However, it is suggested to consult with your doctor and avoid checking it yourself.

What is a Tongue Tie?

A tongue-tie is a condition in which a child’s tongue is connected too highly at its base. Generally, tongue tie happens when a baby’s lingual frenulum connects the tongue to the bottom of the mouth and is too thick and too short. It makes it hard for a child to move his/her tongue freely and causes problems with speaking and breastfeeding.

Symptoms of Tongue or Lip Tie in Newborn Baby

Difficulty breastfeeding is the most common symptom that your newborn baby has a lip tie or tongue tie. The following are some symptoms:

  • Difficulty breathing during nursing
  • Falling asleep during feeding
  • Poor weight gain
  • Colic
  • Struggling to hold the nipple
  • Making clicking sound when feeding
  • Acting fatigued by feeding

Possible Lip Tie Problems Later in Life

A lip tie must not be a cause for concern, except in breastfeeding babies. The following are some symptoms that infants, children and adults may experience:



·        Unable to chew solid foods properly

·        Problem in development of speech

·        Snoring

·        Airways issues

·        Problems related to dental hygiene

·        Persisting foods fads

·        Unable to open the mouth widely               impacts speech and eating habits

·        Need to focus on speech

·        Unable to speak clearly

·        Inability to talk after consuming a             moderate amount of alcohol

·        Painful or clicky jaws

Treatment for Tongue or Lip Tie

First of all, try to avoid diagnosing lip and tongue tie yourself. Ensure you consult a doctor such as a lactation consultant, pediatric ENT or pediatric dentist for diagnosis and get advice on how to manage this condition. If they confirm any of these conditions, then don’t panic. Your doctor may suggest you simple laser surgery. This procedure is known as a frenectomy. The dentist will identify the inflexible tissue that is responsible for tongue or lip tie during this treatment.

Level 1 and level 2 lip ties don’t need revision. If there is a lip tie and tongue tie restricting your toddler’s ability to feed, then a pediatrician may suggest you release them both even if the lip tie is to be level 1 and level 2. Level 3 or level 4 lip tie needs a frenectomy procedure. This procedure divides the membrane attaching the lip to the gums. This procedure is performed by using a laser or sterilized surgical scissors.


After the above discussion, it can be clearly seen that lip tie comes with several challenges and create problems in newborn babies. This condition is not hard to diagnose and is simple to treat with the help of a lactation and pediatrician consultant. If you are concerned about this condition of your baby, then don’t panic and speak with a pediatrician because this situation can become worse in the later stage if left untreated.
Despite this, keep reading our blogs on Personal Care N Heal to know some interesting facts about health.

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