Most Orofacial Myology disorders are developed at a young age and can cause significant discomfort and problems later in life. Orofacial Myology treatment for young children ensures proper development and growth of the facial and mouth, leading to happy, healthy faces and avoiding problems down the track.
What are the Common Orofacial Myology Disorders in Children?
Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders in children are a result of improper development of the muscles around the face, the mouth and neck. In addition to being uncomfortable, a number of functional issues may arise, including:
- Tongue thrusting (an abnormal swallowing pattern)
- Incorrect tongue rest position
- Crooked teeth
- Crowded mouths
- Mouth breathing
- Poor posture
- Incorrect mastication (chewing) function
- Altered speech patterns
- Asymmetrical facial or lip appearance and function
What causes Orofacial Myology Disorders?
OMDs typically develop from a combination of factors. Common causes include:
- Thumb, finger, dummy or blanket sucking
- Nail biting, cheek and lip biting, clothes chewing and grinding of teeth
- Restricted airway, which can be due to enlarged tonsils or adenoids, a narrow or vaulted palate, a large tongue, an oversized uvula and/or allergies.
- Structural or physiological abnormalities such as a restrictive lingual frenum (tongue-tie).
- Neurological or developmental abnormalities
- Hereditary predisposition to some of the above factors.
Failure to treat these disorders can lead to bigger problems down the track, including serious myofacial pain and sleep disorders.
What Can You Do?
Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy is the most effective way to treat OMDs. Orofacial Myology is a non-surgical approach to encouraging proper development and function of the face, jaw and neck muscles. Over time, the muscles are trained to function correctly, allowing the facial structure to develop the proper patterns of use.
If you feel your child has developed an OMD, it is crucial to address the issue in its early stages to avoid trouble later in life. Orofacial Myology treatment is painless, and typically leads to a healthier, happier and more balanced face and mouth. Stamp out the problem early and put a smile on you and your child’s face.