Smiles at North York Dental

Dental Terms

Dental Terms

Frenum North York

A frenulum (plural: frenula or frena) is a small fold of tissue found in various parts of the body. These folds of tissue play a critical role in securing or limiting the movement of mobile organs within the body. While frenula can be present in different areas, they are of particular interest in dentistry, where they can impact oral health and function.

Types of Frenula

There are different types of frenula located in the oral cavity, including:

  • Labial Frenulum: This is the fold of tissue that connects the upper or lower lip to the gum area. The labial frenulum located in the middle of the upper lip is known as the maxillary labial frenulum, while the one under the lower lip is called the mandibular labial frenulum.
  • Lingual Frenulum: The lingual frenulum, also referred to as the lingual frenum, extends from the underside of the tongue to the floor of the mouth. It plays a crucial role in tongue movement.
  • Buccal Frenulum: The buccal frenulum is found inside the cheeks and connects the cheeks to the gums and underlying tissues.

Role of Frenula in Dentistry

In dentistry, the presence and condition of frenula can impact various aspects of oral health and function. For example:

  • The labial frenula, if excessively tight or positioned too close to the front teeth, can contribute to a diastema—a gap between the upper front teeth.
  • A tight or short lingual frenulum can restrict tongue movement, leading to a condition known as ankyloglossia or "tongue-tie." This condition can affect speech, eating, and other oral functions.
  • Excessive tension in the buccal frenulum can contribute to issues related to oral tissue stability and proper alignment of the teeth.

Frenectomy Procedures

In cases where frenula are causing oral health or functional issues, a surgical procedure known as a frenectomy may be recommended. A frenectomy involves the removal or modification of the problematic frenulum to improve oral function and comfort.

If you have concerns about frenulum-related issues or have been recommended for a frenectomy, please contact Smiles at North York Dental at 416-494-5488. Our dental professionals can provide a thorough evaluation and discuss the appropriate treatment options to address your specific needs. We are conveniently located at 4815 Leslie Street in North York, ON.

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