When Mason Motz didn’t start speaking, his family became concerned. They didn’t want their boy to be nonverbal, but they could not avoid that truth. For years, Mason could not speak in complete sentences. Although he was entering school, he still was way behind his peers, although he made noises and grunts. After some thorough investigation, doctors diagnosed Mason with Sotos syndrome and put the issue to rest; they signed him up for special education classes and thought he would learn to deal with it.
Sotos syndrome is a condition that causes overgrowth in childhood that induces learning disabilities and causes delayed development of mental abilities. And since he was born, Mason always seemed to be behind his age group as his mother admitted.
“Since birth, he’s had delays and issues,” mom Meredith Motz told Inside Edition. But little did she know but the doctors were not completely correct about her son. He had a secret issue that only a dentist could identify.
His mother described more about how life was difficult with Mason as he struggled to speak.
“He’s been in speech therapy since he was a little over 1 year old,” his mom said. “Sleeping was always stressful. He would stop breathing. He had trouble eating and swallowing; every single meal we would have to remove something that was choking him. He didn’t get the nutrition he needed. His teeth started having problems.”
Although they suspected something, a number of dentists never knew what his problem was. Only when Meredith met Dr. Amy Luedemann-Lazar of Kidstown Dental in Katy did she realize what was wrong with the boy. He was tongue-tied.
Dr. Luedemann-Lazar sedated Mason and then started searching for the problem. “We did detect a tongue-tie,” the dentist said. “Mason was not nonverbal; he was just unable to speak. He had been in speech therapy for years, and no one had ever checked under his tongue.”
Being tongue-tied is a medical condition called ankyloglossia. The condition develops from birth and involves short bands of tissue that keep the tongue’s tip down so it cannot form words.
When he was just five, Dr. Luedemann-Lazar performed non-invasive laser surgery to undo the tongue-tie. That was in April 2017.
“Within 12 hours (of the procedure), he was talking, and it was amazing!” Meredith said.
And Mason was overjoyed to have his voice finally.
“It’s night and day,” his mother said. “He doesn’t have choking episodes anymore; he’s eating different types of food. He’s behaving much better at school. His behavior was a problem because he was getting poor quality of sleep at night, he was constantly tired and was not able to express himself. He doesn’t snore anymore. He doesn’t have sleep apnea anymore.”
Because Mason has been unable to speak for so long because of his tongue-tie, he still goes to speech therapy. But he is making miraculous progress. Although his speech has improved, he still suffers from the other symptoms associated with Sotos syndrome.
What do you think about this dentist’s insight into Mason’s problem?
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