Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy

Neutralizing the forces of the lower face

Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders (OMDs) are disorders of the muscles and functions of the face and mouth. OMDs may affect, directly and/or indirectly,  breastfeeding, speech, chewing, swallowing, facial skeletal growth and development, temporomandibular joint movement, occlusion, oral hygiene, the stability of orthodontic treatment, facial esthetics, and more.

Most OMDs originate with insufficient habitual nasal breathing or with oral breathing. The subsequent adaptation of the muscles and the orofacial functions to a disordered breathing pattern creates many OMDs. Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders may impact treatments by orthodontists, dentists, dental hygienists, speech-language pathologists, and other professionals working in the orofacial area.

Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy (OMT) eliminates many of the causes of improper rest posture of the tongue and swallowing abnormalities.

OMT is painless and the exercises are relatively simple. By activating certain muscles of the face they start functioning properly and other muscles will follow suit until correct coordination of the facial muscles and tongue is attained.

 

To be successful

For success using this therapy, consistent exercise every day is necessary until the patient has fixed their improper muscle pattern. It takes a commitment by the patient, family ~ and some time. Treatment usually consists of a regular program of exercises over a 6 – 12 month period, although treatment length may vary depending on individual needs.

Benefits

  • Provides a harmonious environment for the structures to develop
  • Establishes a freeway space
  • Improves tonicity
  • Aids in correcting postural problems related to the lips, tongue, jaw and respiratory system
  • Takes an unconscious incorrect pattern or posture to a corrected conscious posture and functional pattern and then habituates it establishing a new corrected neuromuscular pattern
  • Aids in the correction of detrimental oral and facial habits
  • Individualized therapy
  • Corrects resting and swallowing patterns which may be associated with malocclusions
  • Helps correct sleeping positions if deleterious
  • Aids in establishing diaphragmatic breathing
  • Aids in correcting body and head posture