Q: I will be attending your course in December, and was wondering if you’ll be covering this in class. This is a client that I’ve been seeing for over a year. I am attaching two photos. He has a tongue tie but his patents took him to an ENT and the ENT said it wasn’t. His speech has improved but it has been on a stand still because he cannot position his tongue correctly to produce any sound that requires lingual elevation. His doctor said he’s just immature and a late bloomer. Do you have any suggestions? This is a tongue tie, right?
A : Hi, Thanks for your email. This is a common problem, so don’t feel too bad. I got another one similar to yours the day before you wrote to me. Here is one small part of the email from the other SLP: I had a 3 year old client with a tongue tie with anterior attachment. I sent him to an ENT and they confirmed the tie but advised Mom not to do anything at his young age. From the two photos you attached, it would appear that there is limitation. And from what you described as the standstill he is experiencing, it suggests restriction even more so. Yes, we do cover these issues in class. Once you haven take our course, you will have more confidence in approaching doctors and others and explaining in more detail exactly what is happening and not happening; that will make it easier for you and increase the likelihood of their trusting you to make the decisions. You will be able to build a team of professionals whom you can depend on to help you with patients and to take your word on the need for frenectomy, etc. You’ll be looking both at the appearance such as attachment locations of the frenum, flexibility, tautness, length, etc. AND most importantly you will be able to determine the functionality in several modes, and even have measurements to back you up. You’ll be able to see if the person’s tongue can or can not make the necessary inter oral excursions and shaping necessary for acceptable chewing, swallowing and speech. Other than possibly viewing a video, I can’t give you the wording and info to determine the necessity and the ability to convince an ENT to release it. I believe as I mentioned, that you are probably correct but there is no magic pill to get the mother to listen to you and to have her find another ENT…..until after your training when you will have the needed “tools” in your bag. If you have not seen the NSS – Northern Speech course on Tongue Tie 101 for SLPs, there might be a lot of help in that online course. I think the following link gets you there: Orofacial Myology Tongue Thrust | SLP CEUs Keep me posted and I hope you can get this young man the necessary help to get rid of any barriers to success.