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Press release – issued 25 May 2023
New NHS tongue tie clinic opened for babies in Herefordshire
A baby brother and sister are the first babies to receive treatment at Wye Valley NHS Trust’s new tongue tie clinic at Hereford County Hospital, which opened this month.
The midwifery led new tongue tie clinic offers quick and painless tongue-tie divisions to make it easier for babies to feed. Dedicated midwives are specially trained to carry out the minor procedure on babies who are up to ten weeks old.
The clinic brings treatment closer to home for parents and their babies, including parents Charlotte and Adam Russell who attended the clinic recently with their twins Oscar and Poppy who have both recently undergone the tongue tie division.
Charlotte Russell, mother of Oscar and Poppy, said: “We are so grateful to the lovely maternity staff who carried out the procedure. It is amazing to have this service locally. It has really helped so much to support their feeding and we could really see the benefits following the procedure.”
Arwen Nixon, Public Health Midwife at Wye Valley NHS Trust, said: “We are very pleased to be able to offer this treatment locally, which we know will make a difference to parents and their babies. Babies with tongue tie can have difficulty feeding and the condition can cause problems for breastfeeding mothers, such as low milk supply and mastitis.
“The procedure we carry out is very simple and only takes a few seconds to complete. Mums are able to start feeding their baby straight afterwards, with many finding it much easier once the procedure has taken place.
“If you think that your baby may have tongue tie please discuss this with your midwife, health visitor or GP for a referral to be made to the tongue clinic at Hereford County Hospital. Treatment is only necessary if the tongue-tie is making it difficult for the baby to feed and we will assess this at the first appointment.”
A tongue-tie may cause feeding difficulties in both breast and bottle fed babies, including:
- difficulty latching
- difficulty sustaining latch
- colic, wind, flatulence
- prolonged weight loss
- prolonged jaundice
- static weight
- prolonged feeds - frequent feeding - noisy feeds (clicking) - dribbling during feeds - restless between feeds - unsettled post feeds
- heart shaped tongue
Mum’s who are breastfeeding a baby with tongue tie may experience any of the following:
- Engorgement - mastitis - painful feeds - sore / damaged nipples - reduced milk supply - misshapen or discoloured nipples post feed
If you suspect that your baby may have tongue tie contact your midwife, health visitor or GP for a referral to be made to the tongue clinic at Hereford County Hospital.
Pictured left to right - Kate Harding (maternity support worker), Mum (Charlotte), Dad (Adam) and Melanie Kerwin (midwife) with babies Poppy and Oscar.
Notes to Editors WVT:
- Wye Valley NHS Trust is a provider of health services across Herefordshire and beyond. The Trust exists to improve the wellbeing, independence and health of the people we serve.
- By working closely with our partners, we can make good our promise to deliver a quality of care we would want for ourselves, our families and our friends.
- With an estimated annual turnover of around £185 million, we employ around 3,000 staff. We aim to build new relationships between our staff, patients, service users and their carers with the wider community.
For further information please contact:
Fiona Gurney, communications officer, or John Burnett, Communication and Engagement Manager, Wye Valley NHS Trust: 01432 372928