Normal tongue function allows a baby to latch adequately and breastfeed efficiently. As your child grows, having proper tongue function will promote normal speech development, make it possible for a child to self-cleanse the mouth during eating, allow adequate swallowing patterns, and allow for proper growth and development. Common misconceptions regarding tounge-ties are that they they will stretch and correct themselves.
How does tongue-tie affect breastfeeding?
Ankyloglossia is a relatively common finding in newborns (3-15%) and represents a significant proportion of breastfeeding problems. An infant with a tongue tie may not be able to latch correctly. By not creating a deep enough latch, the infant will compress the nipple onto the hard palate, leading to nipple pain and potential bleeding. Additionally a tongue tie is typically accompanied by a high palate, as proper tongue function allows for formation of the palate. Infants with high palatal arch will have a decrease in suction and a reduction in milk transfer.