A frenum is an attachment between two soft tissues in the mouth, including the cheeks, lips, and gums. Everyone has frenum in their mouths, but the shape and size of frenum vary widely across people.
The prime function is to provide stability for the upper and lower lips and the tongue.
In some cases, a person may develop a frenum that’s too long or has an abnormal shape that causes abnormalities or oral issues.
In the upper arch, the tissue that connects the gum to the lip is called the labial frenum. High labial frenum may connect through to the gum tissue between the teeth and extend to the front portion of the roof of the mouth.
The lingual frenum is located between the base of the tongue and the floor of the mouth. When this frenum restricts the movement of the tongue, it represents a condition called “tongue tie” or “ankyloglossia”.
The tongue is one of the most important organs for speech and swallowing. It is attached to the floor of the mouth with a web of tissue called the lingual frenulum. When the frenum attachment is tight, the function of the tongue is restricted, and simultaneously, it affects speech articulation—the ability to form sounds and pronounce words.
Imbalanced functional movements can also affect oral hygiene and systemic health.
A frenectomy is surgery to remove a frenum. It’s designed to reverse any of the undesirable effects of a frenum that does not develop properly. This usually means reducing a frenum that is very long or too tight.
Frenectomies are usually short surgeries performed using LASER under localized anesthesia. This minimizes the risk of infection and blood loss compared to the procedure undertaken in the scalpel.
Proper aftercare procedures, including keeping the area clean and avoiding unnecessary movement of the tongue, help in quick recovery.