Theresa, our Myofunctional Therapist will provide a customized treatment plan for each patient.
Schedule a free screening and talk to Theresa about your options for treatment.
What is Myofunctional Therapy?
Myofunctional Therapy, also known as Orofacial Myology, is the treatment of the facial muscles to improve muscle tone and establish correct functions and control of the tongue, lips, and lower jaw. The muscles of our mouth and face help establish the development of our jaws, teeth, and most importantly our airway!
What Causes an Orofacial Myology Disorder?
Often it is difficult to point to one particular source as the sole cause of an Orofacial Myofunctional Disorder. In most cases it is the result of a combination of factors. Many authorities suggest that Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders may result from the following:
- Improper oral habits such as thumb or finger sucking, prolonged use of pacifiers, cheek/nail biting, tooth clenching/grinding.
- Restricted airway due to enlarged tonsils/adenoids and/or allergies
- Mouth Breathing
- Short lingual or lip frenum attachments (tongue-tie)
- Neurological or developmental abnormalities
- Hereditary predisposition to some of the above factors
Why Be Concerned?
The muscles of our mouth and face are unique and incredibly important. Orofacial myology disorders may have a negative effect on the development of the dental eruption patterns and alignment of the teeth and jaws. This disorder may also compromise a patient’s speech and articulation pattern. The position of these muscles during rest and function determine not only how straight teeth are, but also determine the development of a healthy airway, including the sinuses and nasal complex.
Why is Myofunctional Therapy recommended?
Myofunctional Therapy is recommended to promote proper growth and development and ensure proper nasal breathing. Treating an Orofacial Myology Disorder will help each patient develop to their maximum genetic potential and improve their overall quality of life!
How Can We Help?
Since each case is unique, Theresa, our Myofunctional Therapist will provide a customized treatment plan for each patient. Theresa uses neuromuscular exercises to retrain the lips, tongue and facial muscles, as well as removable appliances for some cases to aid with therapy. Exercises and therapy activities teach the muscles to rest and function in the proper place. This encourages patients to break oral habits, gain control of muscles, and establish proper breathing.
Treatment can improve:
- Breathing patterns
- Proper nasal breathing
- Dental occlusion
- Tongue thrust swallow
- Facial appearance
What age should therapy start?
Myofunctional therapy can begin at various ages. Screening for an Orofacial Myology Disorder can start at birth by evaluating if the child has a lip or tongue restriction, difficulties eating, or inability to breathe through their nose. Active therapy typically starts at age 5. These patients are seen to eliminate harmful oral habits. Once the oral habits are corrected, the patient will complete Myofunctional therapy activities and exercises. The benefits and progress of therapy starts in childhood and continues through their adult life!
Is Myofunctional Therapy just for kids, or can I benefit too?
Although Myofunctional Therapy is very popular in children, adults can seek treatment as well! The Myofunctional Therapy exercises, activities, and removable appliances can benefit any patient. Therapy is tailored individually to each patient’s needs. Theresa can help a patient at any age retrain their mouth and face muscles to work and function properly. Myofunctional Therapy can improve anyone’s overall health and quality of life!
What are benefits of Myofunctional Therapy treatment?
- Establish proper nasal breathing
- Normalize tongue and lip rest postures
- Eliminate improper chewing and swallowing patterns
- Remove harmful oral habits
- Stabilize dentition
- Promote proper craniofacial development
How effective is Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy?
There are many factors that contribute to the outcome of therapy and a patient’s success. Effective communication and a personal relationship with the patient and therapist are necessary. A patient’s cooperation, self-discipline, and dedication are essential to therapy. Myofunctional therapy has helped thousands of individuals. Numerous studies have shown therapy can be 80-90% effective in correcting rest posture, swallowing, and other oral functions. These corrections are retained years after therapy is complete!
Dr. Ryan and his team are always friendly, knowledgeable, and skillful in their work. My previous experiences had mainly been with the hygienists, who are all excellent, but I had my first cavity and the procedure for a filling was nothing short of impressive. Quick and painless!
Definitely recommend Pike Creek Dental, exceptional service through out the entire practice I would describe myself as not the biggest fan of going to the dentist and I have no problem going here.