The Tongue Tie Issue

Tongue Tie Revision

Marin Tongue Tie Revision

Many infants are having a Tongue tie diagnosed by Pediatric Dentists, Lactation Consultants and Pediatricians and Midwives. Sheehan Chiropractic with an office in Marin can help you with Tongue Tie Revision.

This reality has become more common and prevalent in San Francisco and Marin County over the last 10 years. It may be due to increased diagnosis as we in the birth community learn how to see it and deal with it effectively; it is being diagnosed more and more.

The reason isn’t clear but could have something to do with environmental pollutants or hormones in the drinking water or an evolutionary development.

Dr. Sheehan is part of a Bay Area Task Force looking at Tongue Tie to develop better ways of identifying, treating and supporting parents of children and infants with this issue. The Task Force has been meeting monthly since March of 2019 in Oakland California and remotely by Zoom since the pandemic started.

The group is made up of Pediatric dentists, Lactation Consultants and baby and adult bodyworkers who see this issue in their practices.

There is a real need to have good support before, after and during a revision (surgery) of the Tie and this means a team of people communicating together.

The Lactation Consultant or IBLIC should spearhead the whole thing as timing is critical and there is a desire to not have the tie interfere with breastfeeding, and if it does, only for the shortest possible time.

Parents need help getting used to going inside their baby’s mouth to prepare the tissue for the exercises that should be done after the  revision  by the pediatric dentist or ENT  for the best outcome. Baby Craniosacral therapists can really do this work as they focus on melting with the tissue under the tongue and can grade the motion of the tongue with an industry standard tool such as the ATLIF scoring system developed by Alison Hazelbaker.

Bodywork is ideal to prepare the baby’s body for the revision and sometimes that means there are compensatory tethers of tissue coming from the central nervous system, which craniosacral bodywork is ideal to work out.

The work on the baby goes so much better if the parent’s are also supported with work on the table because the two are seen as one unit.

It can be important that we make sure the whole baby’s body is working well before any surgery in that area.  It is important if the area is too tight then good lymph drainage and good blood supply to the area may be altered. It helps the revision go better if the baby’s nervous system is calm. Baby bodywork can accomplish this.

These midline tensions in the baby’s body can also be addressed with early tummy time and other exercises parents can do with their babies such as body mapping.

These exercises can be shown by those trained to work with babies who are focused on tongue tie and do regular bodywork sessions on babies. The after-care exercises can be taught to parents by the same bodyworkers. Practitioners are: Osteopath’s, Pediatric Chiropractors, and Cranial-sacral therapists who have Pediatric training are qualified.

One real question is can the new parents manage the psychological aspects of the release (surgery) and have they even had time to process their birth experience? There is a need for allot of support at this time.

Will the experience of the surgery in any way affect the bonding between parent and infant that needs to happen? With support from Lactation, the Dentist and the bodyworker this hopefully will not happen.

For Parents, know that bodyworkers tend to work through a soft tissue lens, and it helps to remember we are all made of soft tissue and the baby just came through a big experience. The Central Nervous System (CNS), is affecting soft tissue and has to fire appropriate muscle groups and the mouth may not be getting all the information it needs to work properly if there is anything blocking the information from the CNS to the mouth. This frequently happens if the sub-occipital muscles at the base of the skull are tight. Pediatric chiropractors, Cranial-sacral therapists and Osteopaths are uniquely suited to release these muscles so the mouth gets the information it needs to do the job of breastfeeding.

Parents who say they had the best outcomes after a tongue tie revision had done a melting butter technique before to get the baby used to being touched under their tongue. It’s a new experience for the baby to be touched this way and gives the baby time for their nervous system  to process it so they don’t become over activated as touch begins on the upper and lower lip and finally inside. For the melting butter technique please email me at


Chiropractic Care for Marin County – Novato Chiropractor
250 Bel Marin Keys Blvd, Ste D1, Novato, CA 94949

Sheehan Chiropractic | (415) 681-1031

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