For All Dental & Medical Professionals
If your a dentist, hygienist, ENT, oral surgeon, speech pathologist, medical doctor, nurse, pediatrician or any health care professional you had a very intense educational process, no doubt. And your education didn't stop there, each year there are more and more new discoveries and research that changes and improves our education. But for most all of us there has never been the knowledge of what a Myofunctional Therapist is or how Orofacial Myology helps? It can play a very important role in helping you care for your patients health. Orofacial myology isn't new but it is becoming more mainstream in treating orofacial myofunctional disorders. (OMD)
Myofunctional Therapists help correct OMD's and also maximizes the benefits of some oral surgeries by restoring motion, strength, posture, and normal function of the oral facial muscles. Myofunctional Therapy also helps improve a person's day to day swallowing and breathing patterns. If treated early enough, children with proper resting positions and swallowing patterns can grow with proper oral structures and airways.
I'm a hygienist with more than 20 years experience and I've been in the dental field for more than 30years! I was surprised that this topic had not been part of my normal education. Hygienists, dentists and ENT's look in every one of my patients mouth, assess their airways and do an oral cancer screenings, looking at every part of the mouth and throat that we can see but we are not taught some of the simplest postures and patterns of the oral cavity.
I'm a passionate hygienist and I love what I do, and now I'm a passionate Myofunctional Therapist.
Below is a list of many common OMD's you may see in your patient or yourself.
Difficulty speaking clearly
Open mouth resting position
Thumb/ digit sucking
Snoring / Noisy sleeper
Pacifier use in 3+ yr olds
Teeth grinding and clenching
High, narrow palate
Picky or messy eater
Forward head posture
Jaw and/ or neck pain
Improper swallowing pattern
Patients may present with one or more symptoms at the same time. Refer if you identify any of the symptoms listed above in your patients.
What are the goals of Myofunctional Therapy?
The 4 goals of Myofunctional Therapy:
Proper Swallowing K
None of these are more important than the other and all should be performed all day and all night
These Goals are specially designed:
To teach and promote proper nasal breathing.
To strengthen and tone the muscles of the tongue and orofacial complex.
To promote ideal resting oral posture day and night.
To identify compensations and eliminate any parafunctional habits during chewing, talking & swallowing.