What are Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders?
- Atypical, adaptive patterns that emerge in absence of normalized patterns within the orofacial complex.
With these newly adaptive movements, a variety of disturbances can occur.
Examples of adaptive behaviors:
- Thumb and finger sucking habits
- Resting with lips apart (mouth breathing)
- Resting tongue being between or against teeth
- Tongue thrust
These disorders can contribute to:
- Malocclusion (improper alignment of teeth)
- Periodontal disorders
- Orthodontic relapse
- Abnormal jaw position and growth
- Restricted airway due to enlarged tonsils/adenoids or allergies
- Thumb and finger sucking habits as well as clenching or grinding of teeth
- Long term pacifier and or sippy cup usage
- Tongue tie
- Neurological and developmental delays
- Hereditary predisposition
Therapy for OMDs can begin as young as 4 to evaluate proper breathing ability or determine tongue restriction.
What is Orofacial Myofunctional therapy?
Treatment goals may include the following:
- An individualized program to help patient retrain adaptive patterns of muscle function to
create & maintain a healthy orofacial environment
- Normalize tongue and lip resting postures
- Establish nasal breathing patterns
- Eliminate improper chewing and swallowing patterns
- Stablize and dentition from extraneous orofacial muscle movement
- Address harmful oral habits including:
- Prolonged pacifier use
- Thumb and/or finger sucking
- Fingernail, cheek, or lip biting
- Tongue sucking
- Clenching or grinding of the teeth
- Benefits of Orofacial Myofuntional Therapy may include:
- Correcting and improving tongue and lip postures which can aid in the development of normal patterns of dental eruption and alignment.
- Assisting in the stabilization of the teeth during and/or after orthodontic treatment or jaw surgery
- Identifying the need and referring for Speech treatment. Supporting the remediation of speech errors differently than some traditional
methods (when working with a speech language pathologist trained in Orofacial Myology).
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Dr. Stephanie D. Briggs - Columbus Dentist
1120 Polaris Parkway, Ste. 130, Columbus, OH 43240 - ph.
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