We often talk about tongue tie as an issue that primarily affects children. While it’s true that babies benefit tremendously from tongue-tie release, that doesn’t mean that adults might not also benefit. 

Doctors routinely performed Tongue-tie release to support breastfeeding. When breastfeeding fell out of favor, so did tongue-tie release. For decades, children didn’t get tongue-tie release. Many adults don’t realize that they have symptoms of tongue-tie. Here are some of the benefits you could enjoy when you get tongue-tie release as an adult. 

handsome young man with folded arms stands next to a window, smiling TMJ Pain Relief

It’s hard to appreciate how closely interrelated the jaw system is. The tongue has a vital role in the system, and when its movement is restricted, it can’t perform the function. When people have a tongue-tie, they might experience many symptoms related to temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ / TMD)

The most noticeable TMJ symptom people experience with tongue-tie is often pain. This pain is because other muscles have to perform extra work to make up for the tongue’s restricted movement. This can include jaw pain, neck pain, and headaches. Getting tongue-tie release makes it easier for the tongue to participate in regular jaw movements. This can not only help the jaw move more smoothly, but it can also take the burden off of other muscles. Painful tension will decrease, reducing or eliminating sore muscles. 

Better Breathing

Your tongue position impacts your breathing directly and indirectly. The tongue’s position can interfere with breathing. When you have a tongue-tie, your tongue might not be able to move out of the way, causing it to restrict the passage of air through your throat. This can lead to more mouth breathing. It can also contribute to your tongue falling back and closing off your throat at night. This restriction of your airway can lead to snoring or sleep apnea

Tongue position also indirectly affects your breathing because it affects how your mouth develops. Since the shape of your jaws helps define the size of your airway, a tongue-tie can lead to a narrow airway that is more prone to collapse–again, causing snoring or sleep apnea. 

These breathing problems can affect you all day long. In addition to sleep breathing problems, you might find your breathing restricted during the day, as well. The result could be a tendency to get winded easily and feel exhausted during the day. 

Freeing up your tongue could help it move out of the way and make it easier for you to breathe both at night and during the day. 

Clearer Speech

Speech is one of the tongue’s most essential functions. Speaking requires your tongue to perform many complicated movements quickly. When your tongue has restricted movement, it can’t perform all of these motions, which can make it hard to make certain speech sounds. 

People with a tongue-tie often have pronounced lisps and may find it difficult to make sounds like:

  • “T”
  • “D”
  • “Z”
  • “S”
  • “Th”
  • “R”
  • “L”

They might also find it difficult to speak loudly. 

Getting your tongue tie released can help you speak clearly so that your words will be heard and understood. This can make you more confident about speaking in public or speaking up at work. 

Enjoy Foods More

The tongue also plays a vital role in eating. Your tongue helps move food into your teeth to help it get crushed and ground. Tongue-tie can interfere with this function. If your tongue can’t push foods into your teeth, you might not be able to chew efficiently. Hard-to-chew foods become much less appealing. Not chewing foods well can also make it hard to appreciate their flavor. 

Your tongue also helps you swallow. If your tongue is tied, you might have more difficulty swallowing, making some foods unappealing. 

You will find it easier to eat and enjoy foods with tongue-tie release. 

Improved Oral Health

The tongue’s role in eating isn’t only to help food get mashed; your tongue helps clean your teeth. If your tongue’s movement is restricted, your tongue might not be able to clean the backs of your teeth properly. This means that you will have an excess buildup of food debris on the backs of your teeth, increasing your risk of cavities and gum disease.

Getting tongue-tie release can improve your tongue’s ability to clean your teeth and gums, improving your oral health. 

Successful Orthodontics

We mentioned earlier that your tongue helps encourage the growth of your mouth. It also helps your teeth move into their proper positions in your mouth. A tongue-tie keeps your tongue from performing this function. Many people get orthodontics because their tongues aren’t encouraging proper jaw development. However, if they don’t get their tongue-tie released at the same time, they might experience orthodontic relapse, especially if they aren’t wearing their retainers as often as recommended. 

If you consider orthodontics or had orthodontics but relapsed, you should get evaluated for tongue-tie. Considering treatment will improve your odds of success with orthodontic treatment. Tongue-tie release is essential for people considering orofacial myofunctional therapy–successful therapy depends on your tongue being able to do its part. 

Better Overall Health

We’ve talked about many ways that your tongue contributes to your overall health. It helps you breathe, and better breathing can help you sleep better at night and be more active during the day. Helping to reduce or eliminate sleep apnea can help you avoid the dangerous effects of this potentially deadly condition. 

Better sleep can help get rid of some food cravings and reduce reliance on caffeinated beverages, often filled with sugar. Plus, if you get more enjoyment from foods, you will be less tempted by unhealthy fast foods and snacks, which rely on high salt and sugar content to make them more appealing. 

You’ll also benefit from having a healthier mouth. Oral health is an important foundation of overall health. Reducing cavities and gum disease can help you avoid heart problems, diabetes, and other complications from poor oral health. 

Get Tongue Tie Release in Fort Atkinson

If you are an adult feeling the effects of tongue-tie, let us help. At the Wisconsin Tongue Tie Center, we can release your tongue tie and help you enjoy the benefits. We can even follow up with additional treatments like orthodontics or sleep apnea treatment if necessary. 

To learn more about tongue-tie release as an adult, please call (920) 563-7323 or email BKS Dental today for an appointment at our Fort Atkinson, WI office.