Baby with a dimple

What Breastfeeding Moms Need to Know about Buccal-ties?

What Breastfeeding Moms Need to Know about Buccal-ties? A Buccal (sounds like “buckle”) tie or “cheek-tie” is a tight attachment from the cheek. Dentists have stated this is LIKELY the cause of dimples.

What is a buccal-tie?

A Buccal (sounds like “buckle”) tie “cheek-tie” is a tight attachment from the cheek to the sides of the gum tissues on the side where the premolar teeth will be located. If you pull your child’s cheek out it will look like the sail on a sailboat. This will give the baby excessive facial tension which can make it harder for their lips to move. Dentists have stated this is LIKELY the cause of dimples. Even though dimples are super cute on kids, if it is tight and restrictive the tie will pull their cheeks into their mouth.

Are you new here? I also have the following posts to help you with other breastfeeding information!

To Clip or Not to Clip? That is the questions.
Are Tongue Ties real?
Are Lip Ties real?

Will you see issues with Breastfeeding?

YES, if the baby’s tongue can not move up enough, the mother will see that the baby is not getting a good enough latch. Therefore, YES you will start to see some feeding issues.

  • Poor latch
  • Popping off the breast frequently
  • Noticeable clicking noise while nursing
  • Needing to be burped more frequently
  • Colic
  • Not getting enough milk and feeding often
  • Slow weight gain, lack of weight gain, 1% on the weight chart

Do you feel your milk supply is low due to your improper latch, mastitis, clogged duct, bleeding nipples or thrush? Check out my new Ebook that you can download right away with lots of tips and tricks to help along with a lot of printables to help with daily trackers, pain trackers, breastfeeding planner and more. There is a special bonus that comes with a FREE call with me. Check out my Ebook: How to Deal with Pain while Breastfeeding.

Ebook Cover: How to deal with pain while  - How My Emotions Made Me Lose My Breastmilk Supply

Can buccal-ties affect speech?

YES, buccal ties can affect speech but not as much as the other ties.  The tie that will affect speech the most is a tongue-tie. The following sounds are the ones affected by a tie: /t/, /d/, /n/, /r/, and /l/ production.

What does laser mean?

A CO2 laser is used to remove the tight tissue to release the restriction and allow for an improved range of motion. Your pediatric dentist or ENT can use topical and/or local anesthesia. There should always be minimal bleeding from the area that is released. The healing will take about 1-3 weeks along with stretches to decrease the risk of reattachment.

What to do about pain relief with my baby?

Your baby will feel some discomfort after the release. Your doctor should bring the baby right back to Mama for breastfeeding. Each doctor is different but most doctors will not let the parents watch. I was not allowed to watch my child’s release and also did not want to watch his tongue and lip tie release. Breastfeeding will be natural pain relief along with being in their Mama’s arms. Over the next few days, let them nurse as often as they want to help with the pain relief. Using chilled breast milk on the area will help to soothe the pain. Put a frozen block of breastmilk in a mesh or silicone bag and let your baby suck on the cold breastmilk.

What will healing look like?

In the next 24 hours, you might see dark streaks of blood in your baby’s diaper. During the laser procedure, your baby might have swallowed a little of their own blood. However, if you see blood more than 24 hours after the procedure, you should call your pediatrician.

When looking in your baby’s mouth, it will look red to a yellowish/white color. Eventually, it will be completely healed and back to a pink color.

Here is a pediatric dentist that has wonderful pictures on their website of what the first 14 days after a revision of the tongue and lip.

Why do we need to exercise my baby’s tongue?

This is a very important part of the healing process. Your baby’s mouth will heal quickly which is the great news. However, doing stretches every day will help after the procedures to ensure that the tie will not reconnect itself. The worst thing would have to re-do the procedure again.

Risks of not treating oral ties?

You are looking at your child having difficulty with function. Your team of experts should always look at function. They should be looking for is your baby able to breastfeed and get enough milk along with later is your child a picky eater?  You may not see the signs at first but look ahead into the future. In the toddler years you will see: 

  • Speech problems 
  • Picky eating or food aversions 
  • Mouth breathing 
  • Constipation issues

Around the age of 4 you will see:

  • Teeth grinding 
  • Sleep issues
  • Snoring
  • Sleep apnea
  • Constipation issues

Age 8 plus you will see: 

  • Mouth breathing
  • Headaches
  • Snoring
  • Sleep apnea
  • Teeth grinding
  • Braces with a palate expander

At the start of the teen years problem you might see:

  • Orthodontic work
  • Snoring
  • Sleep apnea
  • Sleep issues
  • Forward head posture
  • Jaw pain.

Adults can have:

  • Jaw pain
  • Migraines
  • Anxiety
  • Snoring
  • Sleep apnea
  • Neck pain
  • Tension

You should have a team of experts helping you and your baby: A lactation consultant, bodywork (such as craniosacral therapy, chiropractic care, or myofascial release), revision of a dentist or a pediatric dentist. Most families make the mistake of just getting a revision with no pre and post-revision work done with bodywork and a location consultant or a speech therapist. If you work with someone like me, you get both a lactation consultant and a speech therapist!

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