Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy
Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders (OMDs) are disorders of the muscles and functions of the mouth and face. OMDs may affect many aspects of life such as breast-feeding, facial skeletal growth and development, oral hygiene, facial appearance, eating, sleeping, speech and much more. Most OMDs are the result of improper tongue’s position when swallowing. Correct swallowing depends on a harmonious relationship between the muscles of the face, mouth, and throat. Even though a person swallows 500-1000 times a day it is the tongues resting position that presents the most concern since it is more constant. Most commonly this improper tongue position is referred to as a “tongue thrust”. Even though it is common in infants, as the child develops the tongues’ position should recede. Many times the protruding tongue is found in children with developmental and speech disorders, as well as those with misaligned teeth.
With Myofunctional therapy the tongues improper position can be improved restoring the health of our patients. Our Myofunctional therapy experts will work with your child to improve facial aesthetic and correct tongues position to ensure continued oral health despite having a developmental disorder. Myofunctional therapy is an individualized approach to each child based on age, that will help improve the tongues position and allow for correct swallowing as therapy pro-gresses. With continued therapy you will see an improvement in facial appearance, oral hygiene, eating, and even sleeping. Recognizing and treating OMDs early can have an enormous benefit to improving your child’s self-esteem and re-storing confidence. At Totville we strive to educate the parents on affects of OMDs and make therapy accessible to all that need it.
What to look for
Children who are diagnosed with OMDs exhibit signs of a “protruding tongue” while speaking, swallowing, and even when at rest. This may present many prob-lems beyond the facial appearance. If not treated OMDs can cause many prob-lems, including:
- Misaligned teeth
- overbite, overjet and underbite
- Tooth decay and gum disease
- Facial pain
- Speech problems
- Mouth breathing
- Sleep apnea
- Stomach aches
- Poor posture