A frenectomy is simply the release or loosening of a frenum in the mouth. A frenum is a non-functional muscular attachment between two tissues. There are other parts of your body that have frena (the plural form of frenum) . We are focussing on the oral frenums because this is our specialty. If you gently pull your upper or lower lip away from your teeth and look inside, you see a small vertical piece of tissue attaching your lip to your mouth. That's your frenum. On rare occasions, frena can obstruct normal gum functions, and are candidates for a frenectomy.
The most common reason for a frenectomy or frenum adjustment is if the upper lip's fremum is larger than it should be. When this happens, the frenum may connect through to the gum tissue between the teeth and extend to the front portion of the roof of the mouth. This can create a space between the two front teeth that can not be corrected by an orthodontist.
Another reason for a frenectomy is ankyloglossia, which is a condition in which the lingual frenulum attaches the bottom of the tip of the tongue to the bottom of the mouth. When necessary, tongue tie can also be treated with a frenectomy.
There can be other situations and causes that need correcting. Fortunately, the Buffalo Dental Implant team of Periodontal Surgeons is highly trained and is available to you and your family - right here in Buffalo NY.
In a patient's words -
"My 16 yr old daughter came in for a regular cleaning and had a check up at Buffalo Dental Implant. The dentist told me my daughter’s 2 front teeth were spreading because she needs a frenectomy. They took the time to show me where the frenum should be attached to the upper lip vs. where it was attached on my daughter’s teeth. I was a little surprised because she had previously seen a pediatric dentist her whole life and no one ever mentioned it to me.
My daughter came in to see Dr. Rapoport who was so kind and explained the procedure. It was stress free for my daughter and I think I was more nervous than she was. Afterwords, my daughter was told to take some over the counter pain meds and ice it so she didn’t have swelling. She was in no pain, had no issues going back to her regular routine that day and only had to see Dr. Rapoport for a quick follow up."