Short Lingua Frenum and /r/ Therapy

By Pam Marshalla

Q: I have several students that have distorted /r/’s and short lingua frenums. I am having trouble and would like some advice.

We cannot teach what I call a “Tip R” (the Retroflex R) with a short lingua frenum, but we can teach a “Back R.” However, the Back R is more difficult to do for most students. I would continue with the Back R with an emphasis on the Butterfly Position as described in my book Successful R Therapy, but I would also recommend that the frenums be cut. Your concern about the frenum should stretch further than speech. I have posted a sample letter to the physician regarding the short lingua frenum on this website. See my post, Frenectomy: Sample Physician Referral Letter.

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