The problem with undiagnosed or untreated tongue ties

‘She’ll be right’: No ‘she’ won’t

All too often, we Aussie’s say the phrase ‘she’ll be right’. Well … at least Alf Stewart does. But when it comes to our health or the health of our children, ‘she’ll be right’ should not be used at all. Unfortunately, in the case of the seemingly innocuous medical condition of a lip or tongue-tie (LTT), ‘she’ll be right’ is often used. And thus LTTs are being left untreated or brushed aside because they don’t seem like a big deal at the time. This leads to children, and sometimes adults, having their ties dealt with only when the patient presents with a larger medical condition.

Dr Bobby Ghaheri, a specialist in treating LTTs, believes that breathing problems which stem from untreated LTT are often the cause for bed-wetting in children*. He also notes that of the patients who are having the breathing problems, many are misdiagnosed as having enlarged tonsils or adenoids. The problem with this is that once the tonsils are removed, the breathing problems, and subsequent bed-wetting, are still present.

Breathing problems particularly at night, caused by untreated LTTs, are a serious matter for they have flow-on effects, which impede everyday life. For a child, this can mean problems at school, behavioural issues and even headaches. Adults can experience similar difficulties with work, concentration, and also muscular issues caused by a tight neck etc. For infants, breathing problems can cause trouble with feeding which, of course, impedes overall growth and development.

We understand if you are sceptical in our belief that your child’s bed-wetting issue or breathing problems could be related to something as insignificant as a tiny extra piece of skin in the mouth. But here’s a basic breakdown of why it is such a big problem:

The tongue is meant to sit in the ‘spot’ behind the upper front teeth when not in use. This is because the tongue when in the spot pulls forward and opens up the airways at the front the throat, thus allowing unrestricted air to flow to and from the nose. But when a child has a tongue-tie, their tongue is unable to reach the ‘spot’ therefore leaving the tongue at the bottom of the mouth which causes a blockage of the airways. To correct the restricted breathing, particularly when asleep, children will resort to mouth breathing. This then pushes the tongue further back into the throat and can result in snoring and an assortment of other issues.

But the good news for you is that the LTT release procedure** is quick and easy and can have instantaneous results. At KIDS Mackay we can treat your child’s LTT in-house with our Soft Tissue Laser. Our laser treatment is virtually painless and reduces the risk of infection. And our Soft Tissue Laser can be used on anyone from newborns through to adults.

So don’t be like Alf Stewart, if your child has issues with breathing or feeding from an early age, have your child’s lip or tongue-tie assessed today and see first-hand the wealth of health improvements it can bring.

For more information on treating lip and tongue-tie, please do not hesitate to contact KIDS. Alternatively, complete the form below, and one of our friendly team members will contact you.


*Ghaher, B. (June 23, 2006), The Problem with Breastfeeding Compensations for Tongue/Lip Tie [online]. Retrieved from:

Westphal, S. (2003). Bed-wetters Could Breath Easier. New Scientist [online].

**Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

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