Thirty-Something and Tongue-Tied

Posted by on January 15, 2009 | 15 Comments

“You would be the OLDEST patient I have ever done this surgery on.”  Let me tell you, I felt pretty silly when I heard these words just yesterday (and why did he have to put such emphasis on the word oldest?).  I digress from food today for a quick little story that perhaps a few of you will find as amusing as I did (but, a cheap snack recipe is on the horizon for tomorrow!).

About a year ago, I went to a standard doctor appointment that started out like this:

Doctor: “Stick out your tongue.”
Doctor: “No, I said stick out your tongue.”
Me: (with depresser stick on my tongue) “I amb.”
Doctor: “What? Wait a minute, lift up your tongue.”
Me: (struggling to lift up tongue)
Doctor: “My goodness, you’re tongue-tied. Why didn’t they fix that when you were an infant?”
Me: “You mean it can be fixed?” (yeah, I sounded that dumb)

Fast forward a year, after another doctor noticed my tongue-tied status, and gave me a referral to an ear, nose and throat doctor to get it “fixed.”

ENT Doctor: “Why are you here again?”
Me: “I was told that I am tongue-tied and that it can be fixed.”
ENT Doctor: (laughs – always a confidence booster) “Well, let’s take a look, but if it were really severe, you would have a speech impediment, which you certainly don’t have. (snickers again with disbelief) You would be the OLDEST patient I have ever done this surgery on.”
ENT Doctor: (looks in my mouth) “I’m impressed.  Why don’t you have a speech impediment?”
Me: “I had one when I was a kid…”
ENT Doctor: “… but you learned to compensate.”
Me: “Yeah, I guess so” (not mentioning the part about Cindy Brady as my mentor)

Long story, medium-lengthed, nestled at the bottom of my mouth, sits my tongue, with irritation spots all around the perimeter (that don’t feel good btw and always irritate when I eat citrus) from where it rubs against my teeth.  Apparently, since my tongue is also full developed, that little attachment has grown quite thick, and it is a bit more of a “procedure” (vs the quick snip on infants and toddlers), but the doctor has assured me (to his own surprise) that this is definitely worth doing.

So all of you moms out there, do a little spot check for me; make sure your little one can roll their r’s before they too get a B- in Spanish class simply for their poor pronunciation. 

In the mean time, I am helping this local ear, nose and throat doc go down in the record books for performing that minor tongue-tied procedure on a totally embarrassed, thirty-something patient!


Filed Under: What's Leftover

Comments (15)


  1. Nowheymama says:

    Hey, good for you for figuring out how to compensate! I hope the procedure goes well.

  2. VeggieGirl says:

    YIKES!! Hang in there, Alisa!!

  3. Ricki says:

    So funny! But I guess better late than never, right. . ? Hope it goes well (or has it already happened? Not sure from the story!). 🙂

  4. Sarena says:

    Good luck and feel better soon!

  5. Hannah says:

    No way- I had this same problem too! Mine was dealt with when I was much younger (5, maybe) but I still can’t stick out my tongue very far. Good luck with the procedure!

  6. Katie says:

    I can’t roll my r’s…does that mean I’m tongue-tied?

  7. alisa says:

    Thanks ladies, I will remain tied until my appointment next month … when the doctor is prepared for me! But really, I just find the whole thing rather amusing 🙂

    Katie – no idea? It is basically when the tissue under your tongue that connects your tongue to the base of your mouth is attached too far up, limiting the movement of your tongue … like you can’t lift your tongue up, if that makes sense?

  8. sheree says:

    My grandson is 7 months old today and was also tongue tied. They noticed he was having great trouble latching on to breast feed. He had a simple, quick, clip when he was about a month old. So sorry you had to wait so long. Good luck!

  9. Rachel says:

    I thought I was the only one! I have the same problem, and my dentist thinks it’s funny whenever I have to have dental work done. I didn’t know you could get it fixed!

  10. Lazy Susie says:

    My little one has had two frenulemectomies, one at two mths and one at seven yrs. He thought that going through the 2nd surgery was really interesting and cool.

  11. meg says:

    As a speech therapist, I am surprised that you are just now having this done. Hope it heals fast.

    Love your blog!

  12. […] isn’t my forte, I literally impressed myself late last week.  After a minor “procedure” at the doctor’s office, I found myself in excrutiating pain once the anesthesia wore […]

  13. Olivia says:

    These look surprisingly good…what an interesting combination of peanut butter and cinnamon. Anything with popcorn or rice/soy cakes is good in my opinion. I’ll definitely have to try this b/c I love snacking on popcorn.

  14. Indigo says:

    Wow! I thought I was the only one!
    I also was tongue tied,
    and people always complimented my great diction.
    They never knew I was tongue tied,
    but I didn’t either xD
    Then, a few months ago I went to the dentist,
    and after all the years of going to the dentist,
    they JUST notice under my tongue~
    But, yeah, it did nothing for my diction, I never had a speech impediment, and I never had the need to stick my tongue out XD
    So, all in all, the only thing it was for was just because I was insured, haha

    (I STILL can’t roll my R’s conventionally though, I just do the single roll when I speak japanese)


  15. Indigo says:

    P.S. the stitches were so annoying DX

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