Cleft Lips and Cleft Palate

Cleft Lips and Cleft Palate is a neonatal developmental defect that causes splitting of the lips and upper palate.  It occurs in one out of 700 new born babies.  This condition is hereditary and currently our knowledge about this hereditary condition is not complete.  Luckily, the defective lips and palate can be surgically repaired with modern cosmetic surgery techniques.  The outcome of the plastic surgery depends on the severity of the defects.  If the defect only affects the lips, surgery can successfully repair the lips.  However, if the defect affects the upper palate, this can affect the child’s dental development and also may affect the speech learning.  In some rare instances, this clefting condition may affect the hearing.

To properly manage the clefting condition, a team of specialists from many medical specialties, including a dentist, will be working together to help the child.


Written by Daniel Tee, DDS, MS

Practicing General Dentist Serving the city of Tempe, Chandler, Phoenix, Gilbert, and Mesa in Arizona.

Dental Office in Tempe AZ