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10 Responses to The Long Story of a Short Tongue: Part One

  1. Maman A Droit  

    Our little guy is tongue-tied but was a champ nurser anyway, much to my relief. I did have quite a bit of nipple pain at first though & I think it was due to the tongue-tie! Even so, we were very lucky I think!

    • Laura

      Oh, wow! I’ve heard that some people can nurse, and have their baby gain weight, even with a tongue tie. I know a couple who had it clipped but would still nurse, abiet with alot of pain. Good for your little dude- and you!

  2. Pearl

    Can’t wait for Part Two!

    The “tube feeding” took me a minute, though. I finally realized you meant a supplemental nurser, but as the mommy of a tummy-tube kid, it confused me at first! 🙂

    • Laura

      Lol, I can see how that would be confusing!

      I actually used an nG tube. It is a thin tube that snakes through the nose into the stomach. There is a little area at the top where you can “Screw” a syringe in and let the milk flow through the tube into the baby’s stomach. I would either use the tube to finger feed him or slip the end into his mouth after he was latched on. I, or another helper, would sloooowly dispense the milk through the syringe attached to the tube. It was time consuming and messy, but really helped boost my supply in those first few days!

      Thanks for your comment so i could clarify!

  3. Lindsey

    My son did breastfed, and gain, successfully with a tongue-tie (we weren’t even sure right away that he had it, and then when it was confirmed, we weren’t sure it would be detrimental to him). I had the worst nipple pain for weeks while nursing him. It felt like shards of glass at times. Deep fissures formed in my nipples before I had an IBCLC come out around day 7. She ordered a very strict change of regimen which helped me heal, but we didn’t ever go get his tongue tie checked out or clipped. He went on to nurse for 18 months successfully. At age 4, we decided to pursue the surgery, b/c a pedi we saw wondered if it might be affecting his speech. Boy, can you believe such a surgery (outpatient) costs over $10,000?? This is a long way to say, if you’re going to do the surgery, earlier is better. Thankfully, he came out of it well and healed perfectly, but I might do it differently if I had the chance again.

    • Laura

      YIKES! What did the LC do differently, if I may ask? I didn’t have horrible nipple pain (although I had some) but I figure since it was my fourth baby, you could do alot to my nipples before I felt pain. Lol.
      We were told the earlier the better also. My PuddinPie is in speech and his therapist recommends the earlier the better also.

  4. Danielle S.

    I know the “shards of glass” feels like. My first son was tongue-tied and he would gum my breast to express the milk because of his poor latch. The first week he was home I remember holding him while he screamed and trying to get up the courage to try again, and then having his dad come and take him away from me and give him a bottle – I was both relieved and ashamed. I had a LC come by and she diagnosed him with tt immediately, and told me her son had a tt as well and that she “lost a nipple” from it. She went on to tell me her son’s dentist clipped his tongue tie when he was 6 because his tongue was pushing on his bottom teeth. We saw a ped and an ENT specialist about it but no one would clip my son’s tt, and I was too timid to push the issue. I had constant blood blisters on my breasts from the gumming and it felt like shards of glass cutting me inside when he nursed, then around 3 months it started to get better, I guess his tongue grew, and I was able to nurse him until he was almost 3. I’ve since had two other kids and was able to nurse them without any latch problems.

  5. Kay McKee, IBCLC

    I feel like the tongue-tie queen. I’ve been an IBCLC for a long time, and only in the last 5 years are we getting increasing recognition from docs and others that this is a serious feeding issue, that the benefits of human milk and of actually feeding at breast make fixing this problem important (rather than just pumping or switching to formula), and that clipping even before leaving the hospital is by far best. There are different types of TT, and though they can often extend well, many TT babies cannot elevate well, which the AAP newsletter in 2004 indicates is the most important part.

    Sometimes these babies should also be seen by an OT after their tongue is revised, as they often have formed oral behaviors in utero that can be improved.

    Red flags: high domed palate. tongue stays in floor of mouth when fussing. jaw motion is chompy, jerky, or has frequent tremors. Baby does not open well. Top lip rolls in frequently. Suck feels very strong or soft. Clicking or smacky/slurpy noises. Cheeks suck in when sucking. Leaks milk. Frequent congestion. sore nipples. Bites and gnaws on mom. Low milk supply. Baby feeds in short bursts (3-5 sucks then pauses, not 8-12), comes on and off frequently, feeds around the clock when should be spacing out, colicky, gerd, slow wt gain. Early engorgement despite frequent “feeds”.

    Long term: reduced human milk intake, early weaning, sub-optimal growth and health. Dental decay. Narrow dental arch leading to braces. Speech. Can’t lick an ice cream cone or french kiss.

    this is usually a 10-30 second procedure in the first month with only drips of blood and brief if any pain. The babies HATE being held still and scream, but that makes it easier to do and over sooner. the longer you wait, the more developed the tissues (and poor feeding patterns)become, and the more involved, expensive the treatment. Most TT babies BF far more comfortably and effectively right afterward; some will need some LC or OT work.

    What I can’t figure out is why docs are so resistant to clipping or referring for clip, refuse to read or believe their own research, and often put mothers and babies through weeks or months of hell that should be blissful baby time. BUT THEY DON’T BAT AN EYE AT THE ROUTINE REMOVAL OF THE FUNCTIONAL FORESKIN TISSUE OF MOST BABY BOYS, WITH NO LITERATURE TO SUPPORT IT, AND THE CURRENT POSITION BEING THAT BENEFIT DOES NOT OUTWEIGH RISK. What happened to first, do no harm?

    If you think your baby may be tongue tied, please see the info at http://www.kiddsteeth.com and at http://www.brianpalmerdds.com. See an IBCLC, and insist on your baby being evaluated by someone who believes in BF.

  6. cassie brown

    your story is just like mine my baby is been he is being check for tongue tied this coming up week my lactation consultant suggested it to me because he makes that clicking sound and my nipples look weird even though he is latch on correctly. i am a first time mom and breastfeeding is not but i have been sticking with it