Cleft Lip / Palate Surgery in Frisco, TX
Parents in Frisco, TX who have children that were born with a cleft lip/palate have many concerns, and each of these can be addressed by the compassionate and caring physicians at the International Craniofacial Institute.
Generally, orofacial clefts are visible, yet certain characteristics, such as middle-ear components that are poorly positioned, may require the help of x-rays and other tests to be determined. When a newborn has their exam, we will gently investigate these structures thoroughly, including the soft palate located at the back of their mouth and the underlying submucous membrane that is in the bony palate. One of our doctors at the International Craniofacial Institute will then use their evaluation to diagnose the severity and extent of the physical anomalies. Once this is done, they will then develop a treatment plan and provide you with practical infant care instructions. In addition to this, you will be given information regarding how you can help support their progress through the various repair stages that occur throughout childhood and into the teenage years.
Sound Strategies – Communication Is Critical
Your baby’s pre-speech sound development can be affected by a cleft lip/palate. Therefore our team’s speech therapist will perform an early examination and evaluation that can then be used to create a teaching plan. Your child can learn how to focus and make various sounds, even before they have palatal surgery. In fact, it is important to encourage language experimentation early in your baby’s life because their natural curiosity is what leads them to develop speech.
In time, palatal surgery can provide your child with a more normal oral space that can enable them to begin forming correct speech. In addition, we will perform an assessment and diligently monitor your child’s hearing, since speech and the ability to hear correctly are often intertwined. It is common for the middle and/or inner ear to develop at the wrong angle due to the cleft. This can make it difficult for complete drainage to occur. When this continues over time, chronic ear infections can occur. If not corrected, these frequent infections may require tubes to be surgically inserted to allow for efficient drainage and to reduce pressure, pain and complications that may arise from fluid build-up.
Treatment – Professional Team and Proper Timing
Fortunately, cleft lip/palate conditions are treatable surgically. Our team will evaluate your child and develop a treatment plan that will create an excellent form, function, and appearance of their entire oral-facial area. Since the cleft can cause dysfunction and anomalies in other parts of the baby’s jaw, mouth and ears, our treatment plan will include several types of repair along with specialists to assist with each area and a time frame designed to fit within your child’s natural developmental windows. This way, their natural growth patterns will not be disrupted or altered.
If your child or another close family member is struggling with a genetic syndrome, a cleft palate/lip or another craniofacial complication, then the staff at the International Craniofacial Institute is available to help. Contact us today and speak with one of our doctors and staff to find out more about your options and what our team can do to provide support.