baby got bite

Baby Got Bite!

This simple treatment offers a number of benefits. In addition to improving some breastfeeding problems in infants, it can also improve speech problems caused by a tongue tie, promotes proper oral and facial growth, supports musculoskeletal development, behavioral development and supports airway development and reduces future airway dysfunctions such as sleep apnea. We take a well rounded approach to this procedure using myofascial release and myofunctional therapy, manipulations (naturopathic adjustments) with a treatment plan that includes assessment of total health (GI health, structural & nervous system development).

Dr. Jill Ghormley started working with mamas and babies while she was in medical school, assisting her classmates between classes to care for their little ones. Her love for this work came from something very personal in her life – her older sister. When her sister was younger, she was told by her doctor she may not be able to get pregnant due to her condition, diagnosed as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Her periods were irregular making it harder for conception.

Then according to her sister, a miracle happened and she became pregnant with her son. Her sister had a successful vaginal delivery in the hospital but struggled with breastfeeding. Dr. Ghormley was in graduate school when her nephew was born and wasn’t sure at that time how to assist her sister, accept to do research and be there for her. Dr. Ghormley was exposed to the concept of lip and tongue ties during her research as a medical illustrator. She became fascinated while learning about the vagus nerve connection with
regards to tight oral restrictions leading to difficulties in suck/swallow mechanism.

After her nephew was born, her sister and her husband were trying for another child. They struggled with this process and tried everything for 5 years to get pregnant again. They underwent IVF with no success. Dr. Ghormley watched her sister become depressed and desperately wanting to have a sibling for her son.

While Dr. Ghormley was in medical school, one of her teachers specialized in fertility homeopathy and she approached her. Her sister became a patient of this medical professor and through homeopathy was able to successfully get pregnant with her 2nd child after 5 yrs of trying.

Her pregnancy was smooth but her birth was a difficult one. She labored long with the 2nd child and was told that she would need a cesarean section. Dr. Ghormley was in her 3rd year of medical school and became her sister’s birth advocate while in the hospital negotiating with the OB/GYN on call and labor and delivery nurse. While NDs don’t have hospital privileges, they have great grasps of education and a wealth of anatomical knowledge to understand the process. She fought hard on her sister’s behalf for her to have a vaginal delivery. But at the time, due to short staffing, it was decided that the baby would be delivered via c-section. Dr. Ghormley spoke with the labor and delivery nurse privately (who at the time had 30 years of labor and delivery experience) and was told that the baby was engaged and could have been delivered vaginally with more time. But the the ultimate call came from a fresh out of residency OB/GYN to perform the procedure. Dr. Ghormley was invited into the surgery suite to watch the delivery. This experience set the foundation of Dr. Ghormley’s career without her knowing until several years later.

To further understand birthing processes, Dr. Ghormley enhanced her education through global medicine working with African and S. East Asian midwives and birth doulas because she felt there has to be a better way. Her journey took her through understanding postpartum effects neurologically for the moms and babies and how the birthing process alone sets the foundation for effective development long term. Dr. Ghormley became heavily involved in understanding and researching critical stages of neurological reflexes called primitive reflexes in the first year of life.

Today, Dr Ghormley’s sister has 3 beautiful grown children. Her sister is her inspiration for the work she does today. Her passion is about arming families with the proper tools and information to help their little ones thrive from birth and on. Dr Ghormley’s love is education and researching for the best possible solution and she never stops searching for new and better resources for parents and children.

It is this passion for the mission that has inspired her colleague, Britt Isbell, to join. Being a mama herself, Britt knows all the challenges that go hand in hand in setting up the little ones for success. Go to Britt’s story to find out how she is becoming an AMAZING advocate in the mama and baby community.

Dr. Ghormley provides community-based care in performing frenectomies (C02 laser), craniosacral therapy, pediatric sacral occipital technique and naturopathic physical medicine to help children who have retained primitive reflexes to thrive.

Frequently asked questions

What is a Co2 frenectomy?

A minor surgical procedure that involves using a C02 laser to correct/release oral ties (tongue, lip, cheek or buccal) OR tongue-tie and lip-tie conditions which prevent airway dysfunctions, restriction of head and neck movements, headaches, etc. as the child develops. This procedure is very short and your baby will be back in your arms in minutes to nurse and cuddle.

Does it hurt the baby?

Because no anesthesia is used during this procedure, we want the baby breathing and crying to know they are fully engaged in their bodies. The initial onset of the laser does sting but numbs the laser area up to 5 hrs.

Does it take long?

Typically the procedure take approximately 3 to 5 minutes

Can kids “grow out” of an oral tie without treatment?

Research shows that oral ties become restricted overtime when they are not addressed early on. They can present with neurological development challenges

What happens during the procedure?

Babies - they are gently swaddled and wrapped. Their eyes are covered and the clinical assistant will do gentle CST while the provider performs the release in order to help the tissues and nervous system relax.
Older kids and adults - We give local anesthetics topically and injection to take tension off the tissue being released. The older patient is in a reclining table/chair for comfort.
We find that soft tissue manipulation like myofascial release along w/adjustments & laser frenectomy has helped significantly in letting people gain more mobility in their upper MSK system.

What can happen if we don’t correct oral ties now?

In addition to supporting a mother and child’s breastfeeding journey, treating oral ties as a baby helps set them up for a lifetime of proper oral growth, digestive health, musculoskeletal development, and breathing through functional airway optimization. Untreated oral ties restrict growth of the jaw and oral developmental functions which initiates a degeneration process which can lead to teeth grinding, TMJ issues, airway dysfunction, neck pain, headaches and more.