For years, the parents Mason Motz believed he was mostly nonverbal due to a brain aneurysm he had when he was just 10 days old. That all changed in April 2017, however, when a routine trip to the dentist had him speaking in full sentences. 

Dr. Amy Luedemann-Lazar, a pediatric dentist, was performing unrelated procedures on Mason’s teeth when she noticed the band of tissue under the tongue was shorter than usual. In other words, he was biologically tongue-tied. After getting permission from Mason’s mom, Meredith, Dr. Amy untied his tongue using a laser — a procedure that took just 10 seconds.

After his surgery, Mason went home and his mother recalled hearing him say, “I’m hungry. I’m thirsty. Can we watch a movie?”

She told Inside Edition: “It was just shocking.”

Mason was diagnosed with Sotos Syndrome, a disorder characterized by a distinctive facial appearance, overgrowth in childhood, and learning disabilities or delayed development of mental and movement abilities, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. The six-year-old had been going to speech therapy since he was one, but his parents said they were the only two who could understand him. 

“He could pronounce the beginning of the word but would not utter the end of the word,” Meredith told the New York Times. “My husband and I were the only ones that could understand him.”

These days, Mason is still working with a speech pathologist but went from speaking at the level of a one-year-old to that of a four-year-old in just months. They expect him to be back on track with other kids his age by the time he turns 13. He also is finally able to eat without choking.

Meredith said that the experience taught her to fight for your child. “[Parents] should trust their gut instincts about their child, and if you think that something is going on, doctors may tell you one thing but keep looking and keep trying, because you’re usually right,” she said. “You know your child best.”