Cleft Lip and Palate
Congenital anomalies such as cleft lip and cleft palate are developed even before the baby was given birth by its mother. It is a result of tissue of the mouth and lips that wasn’t able to join together. A cleft lip appears to be a narrow opening or gap on skin of the lips. This separation may extend to the base of the nose and may affect the bones of the upper gum and jaw. A cleft palate on the other hand affects the roof of the mouth which involves the hard palate and soft palate with a split or opening on it.
A cleft lip and cleft palate can happen on both sides of the mouth. There is a possibility of having a cleft palate without a cleft lip or a cleft lip without a cleft palate, or you can have both of them. Cleft palate and Cleft lip accounts to 700 babies yearly and is considered as the fourth most common birth defect in the United States. S for the cause of the defect, it is unknown but there are some factors that may be a reason for the defect. Genetic and environmental factors can be the reason. Medications taken by the mother while the baby is still developing in the womb may account to that. Some of the medications are anticonvulsants or anti-seizure drugs, drugs for psoriasis, and arthritis, and Accutane containing drugs. It is always recommended to consult your doctor if you are not feeling well when you are pregnant. There might be consequences on you actions. Prevention is always better than cure, always remember that.
When a cleft lip and cleft palate is diagnosed, there are procedures that can help restore the state of the baby. For cleft lip, there are two surgeries done for repair depending on the extent of the condition. It is done usually when the baby is 3 month old. As for cleft palate, it need multiple surgeries. When the baby is about 6 to 12 months, a surgery is required to repair the palate initially and decrease the chance that fluid may go to the ears. When the baby reaches 8 years old, another surgery is done. Upper gum lines are filled and a bone graft is needed to support permanent teeth and to stabilize the upper jaw. Further surgeries are required to be performed for the restoration of speech of the child. Restoring the appearance and function of the person may rang to 18 years of his or her life. This may take a while but surely it will create the happiest child in the world. Emotional and physical support of the family is important on this stages of the baby life aside from the financial support. A happy child is result of a supporting, caring and loving family member. Always remember that it is the most important element on the life of a person may it be a baby, a child, an adult, or an elderly.