Myofunctional Therapy

myofunctional therapyRoyal Oak and Birmingham, MI

Do you suffer from a sleep breathing disorder such as sleep apnea? Have you been diagnosed with temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)? Does your child exhibit a negative oral habit such as thumb sucking or tongue thrust?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then myofunctional therapy can help.

What is myofunctional therapy?

Myofunctional therapy seeks to correct a wide variety of oral disorders through a series of exercises that work the tongue in conjunction with the muscles of the mouth and face. The exercises essentially retrain these muscles to functional at an optimal level. The exercises are simple and pain-free to perform. Typically, a course of myofunctional therapy is prescribed for a minimum of six months, to increase the likelihood of successful results.

One of the goals of myofunctional therapy is to obtain the ideal oral resting posture: with teeth together, lips together, and the tongue resting comfortably against the roof of the mouth. This resting posture fosters shallow breathing through the nose, which has a host of health benefits including a greater absorption of oxygen into the bloodstream; and encourages that the orofacial system remains in a harmonious state.

Who needs myofunctional therapy?

The therapy seeks to correct an orofacial myofunctional disorder (OMD), which is the category of conditions that manifest from a malfunction of the muscles of the face and mouth.

Any of the following conditions, behaviors or issues can result from an OMD:

  • Speaking with a lisp or other type of speech impediment
  • In infants, inability to breastfeed or latch
  • Teeth clenching or grinding, also known as bruxism
  • Loud snoring
  • A sleep breathing disorder, such as obstructive sleep apnea
  • A tongue-tie or lip-tie, also referred to as tethered oral tissue
  • Crooked teeth
  • Sucking the thumb or fingers
  • Biting of the nails or inanimate objects
  • Slouching or forward head posture
  • Tongue thrust
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Regularly breathing through the mouth

At Hartrick Dentistry, we we are trained in detecting OMD disorders and work closely with a myofunctional therapist in the area. If we see any OMD disorders we will refer you to a myofunctional therapist and coordinate therapy between us.

To learn more about myofunctional therapy and its benefits, call the office of Hartrick Dentistry at (248) 549-0950.

Hartrick Dentistry serves patients in Royal Oak and Birmingham, Michigan.