What is myofunctional therapy?
Myofunctional therapy is a treatment that uses physical therapy exercises to train the muscles of the face, neck, and mouth. These exercises improve or eliminate various orofacial myofunctional disorders. Orofacial myofunctional disorders are irregularities that stop your teeth and jaw from developing on a normal pathway.
The team at Inspira Advanced Dentistry teaches your child these exercises and tells you how to do them at home. Your child should also come back regularly so that the doctor can track their progress.
Sometimes, myofunctional therapy also involves habit training. Some habits during infancy and early childhood can lead to long-term face and jaw dysfunction, so it’s important to address them early with your child’s dentist.
Inspira Advanced Dentistry customizes your child’s myofunctional therapy treatment program based on their symptoms and your age. Successful myofunctional therapy can improve your child’s function for the rest of their life.
What does myofunctional therapy treat?
Orofacial myofunctional disorders usually start with bad habits that babies and small children develop. These include mouth breathing, thumb or finger sucking, and tongue thrusting. Another early indication is improper swallowing. If your child grimaces when they attempt to swallow, that’s improper swallowing.
Orofacial myofunctional disorders start with bad habits that might not seem like much of a problem. However, they can cause serious dental problems like:
Face and jaw pain
Snoring and breathing problems
Frequent stomach aches from swallowing air
In many cases, orofacial myofunctional disorders affect a child’s appearance as they grow.
What are the benefits of myofunctional therapy?
Correcting orofacial myofunctional disorders during childhood can have many positive effects on their oral functioning and appearance. Myofunctional therapy could benefit your child in one or more of these ways:
Improve speech clarity
Prevent the need for orthodontic treatment
Reduce chances of future sleep apnea
Reduce chances of temporomandibular joint disorder
Improve your child’s appearance
By reducing problems like mouth breathing, tooth and jaw misalignment, and facial imbalance, your child gets a better chance at feeling confident in school and other settings among their peers. Plus, myofunctional therapy might help you save money and time spent in the dental office later on when it comes time to consider braces, aligners, or other orthodontic treatments.
Myofunctional therapy is an excellent choice for young children developing early bite issues stemming from oral habits. To schedule a consultation for your child, call Inspira Advanced Dentistry today or book one online.