Double Frenectomy, 3 weeks later

I want to say that our world has been turned upside down because the difference has been that drastic, but in reality it would be more accurate to say that our world has turned right side up.  We have been struggling since she was born.  Really, she was a miserable, tough baby.  I believed that she had been easy because I think that I just had no idea what to expect and set my expectations really low, but the more I spoke with other mothers who would say things like, “my little is such a bad sleeper, still not sleeping through the month at 4 months,”  or “my baby eats constantly, like more than every 3 hours, at 5 months,”  et cetera… I began thinking that while I was experiencing all of these things that made their babies “bad”  (and significantly more “bad” traits)  I considered my little girl a great baby.

I began to realize that everybody simply had higher expectations for their babies than I did.  They wanted to sleep through the night whereas I had accepted that it would never happen, and I was just happy she was getting 2 consecutive hours of sleep between each wake up (at 8 months old).  I had accepted that my little girl would be fed small meals constantly throughout the day because any more and she would throw it all up.  I had accepted the fact that she had to have a pacifier to prevent her from vomiting all of her food after every meal, and I was okay with those things.  We were struggling, but we were okay.

Since her double frenectomy she has truly become the great baby I have always said she was.  She is sleeping through the night almost consistently, which she had never done pre-revision.  She eats two times more during each feeding than she was eating before, and she doesn’t care for her pacifier as much as she did previously, among so many other things.  She cries much less throughout the days and I believe that is because she isn’t feeling a constant hunger like she was before because she is actually able to keep her food down.

The biggest struggle I have dealt with in the past 2 months is that I gave up breastfeeding her a month before her revision.  She had begun losing weight drastically and I was at my wits end with the asinine pediatricians ignoring every request for referral and complaint about E.  Had I known that in just one month that she would be fixed, I would have kept going, but that one month was enough to change her eating habits and prevent breastfeeding from being a possibility again.

If you believe that your little one has a lip or tongue tie and your providers are telling you no, or completely avoiding the topic, please see a preferred provider (I will include the current list on this blog post).  Many doctors, even fresh out of residency, are not educated on ties and all that they cause.  This list also includes support groups on facebook for each state or region.

Tongue Tie, Lip Tie

Frenectomy follow up

10 day follow up

Continue reading “Double Frenectomy, 3 weeks later”

Double Frenectomy, 10 days later

In this week and a half, we have experienced so much change!  Elizabeth’s double frenectomy (lip and tongue tie releases) went well.  They were heartbreaking to watch, but overall a more positive experience than I had expected.  The stretches lasted a full 7 days, and they were so tough.  To do the lip stretches I would pull her lip away from her gums, toward her nostrils.  At that point, with a numbing gel on my finger, I would roll my finger in the cauterized spot to prevent it from healing back together.  The tongue was essentially the same process.  She fought so hard.

I was so so fortunate in that my mother in law was able to come and help me out.  Together, we were able to do Elizabeth’s stretches every 3 hours during awake times.  My mother in law would hold Elizabeth’s arms down while I quickly did the stretches, they would take about 30 seconds total, and we would feed her immediately following.  On the 7th day we had a follow-up appointment with our IBCLC.  We were told that Elizabeth’s mouth was healing wonderfully and the aggressive stretches that we had been doing were no longer necessary, and to just do a less invasive stretch instead.

We seem to be doing so well!  She had never slept through the night before her releases on the 30th (8.5 months old) and since that night she has been sleeping from about 8pm until about 4am.  A few of the nights she woke up a couple times.  Should I add that she is also growing 4 teeth in the top?  She eats about twice as much as she did before the correction, could almost immediately say mama and dada after the correction, but would only say “baba”.  She doesn’t throw up after eating anymore, we can actually see her tongue moving both when her mouth is open and when it’s closed by looking at the muscles on the sides of her head, and the lists go on!

If your child is suffering from lip or tonuge ties, don’t let fear of the revision prevent you from getting it fixed.  The benefits completely outweigh the heartbreaks throughout the process, and the improvements will be a breath of fresh air with your little one!

Tongue Tie, Lip Tie

Frenectomy follow up

3 week follow up

Tongue Tie, Lip Tie

Ever since I was a brand new mom, I knew something wasn’t right with my baby girl.  Things were popping up in our nursing relationship that I had never heard of, and I did extensive research during pregnancy.  She had symptoms of so many things that were all over the place that none of my other mom-friends experienced, and I was lost.

The following are symptoms of ties in a baby, I’ve made symptoms we suffered through bold:

  • Nursing blisters on baby’s lips
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  • Excessive gas
  • Excessive hiccups
  • Colic
  • Reflux 
  • Noise while feeding,  a click, pop, or loud swallowing noise
  • Excessive drooling not associated with teething
  • Shallow, painful latch
  • “Lipstick” shape nipple immediately after the baby releases
  • Fussy feedings, not relaxed
  • Constant latching and unlatching during feedings
  • Leakage during feedings
  • Frequent feeding
  • Long nursing sessions
  • Excessive weight gain (because baby is trying so hard to eat, he/she eats more)
  • Low weight, or weight gaining issues
  • Short naps, never sleeping peacefully
  • Infrequent swallowing
  • Unable to hold latch on breast, bottle, or pacifier
  • Constant need to suck on breast, pacifier, finger, etc.
  • Recurring mastitis, or clogged ducts
  • Supply issues
  • Sore, damaged nipples that don’t seem to heal
  • Green stools
  • Scoop in the tongue 
  • downloadedfile
  • Gagging
  • Snoring while sleeping

With all of these symptoms I was sure that she had ties, but no doctors would even look at  her mouth when I brought it up.  We saw two separate pediatricians before she was 3 months old, and neither paid any attention to it because she didn’t have weight issues.  We moved from California to North Carolina and almost the same situation happened with the next two doctors we saw.  The first said used the weight-gain excuse and ignored it, and the second at least entertained the idea and looked into Elizabeth’s mouth, raising her lip, and checking her tongue.  He noticed a very tight frenulum at her upper lip, but said that because she’s able to stick her tongue out, it wouldn’t cause any issues.  At least this doctor tried, even though he wasn’t really sure what he was saying.

I struggled through with her issues, (she’s 8 and a half months old and still dealing with all of them) and trying to find the best place to get it taken care of/save the money for the procedure.  Luckily we were able to secure a spot at an event which would allow us a little money saving, and still have it done in the preferred way.  The preferred was is done with a laser and no anesthesia.  I met with a local IBCLC (International board certified lactation consultant) who confirmed Elizabeth’s ties very quickly.

She had me hold Elizabeth on my legs with the top of Elizabeth’s head toward her (Tori) stomach.  Elizbeths feet were against my torso.  From that angle she was able to test the upper lip’s ability to move, to which she stated that it was very restricted.  She maneuvered Elizabeth a couple times to get the best angle.  She felt under Elizabeth’s tongue, the sides of her mouth, and the roof, to which Elizabeth responded with a big gag.

Tori was absolutely amazing (of Tiny Tummies Lactation Services in Jacksonville, NC).  She was so personable, knowledgeable, caring, understanding, and relatable.  Literally every positive adjective for a person/service can be said about her.  I hope to never need to use her services again, but will gladly do so if the need arises.

Tomorrow we will drive over two hours to a dentist and meet with a team of lip/tongue tie educated folk and I am so anxious about it.  I cried on the way home from visiting Tori when I realized that Elizabeth will, in fact, have her ties lasered tomorrow.  What makes it even worse is that my husband is out of town so I will be making this journey on my own (and Elizabeth, of course).

I’m hoping that the two hour drive home isn’t too terrible and that we can have the meltdowns and more painful experiences in the comfort of our house rather than in a parking lot of some random building or on the side of the road.

Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers for a positive (as much as possible) experience and recovery, especially the trip home. ❤

Frenectomy follow up

10 day follow up

3 week follow up