Does your child often breathe through their mouth, or do they frequently suck their thumb or fingers? They might require myofunctional therapy, a service that aims to prevent future problems by training a patient to use their oral structures in the proper way. If you believe that you or your child could benefit from this service, our Mankato team is ready to consult with you so you can lay the foundation for a healthy smile. Get in touch with us today to learn more.
Myofunctional therapy is a type of physical therapy that aims to correct orofacial myofunctional disorders (OMDs). That sounds like a mouthful, but the basic concept is pretty easy to understand. Essentially, myofunctional therapy trains a patient, whether they are young or old, to use their oral structures in the proper way. For example, it can teach them correct swallowing techniques, encourage them to breathe through their mouth instead of their nose, help them to enjoy a more functional bite, and more.
Myofunctional therapy is often recommended for children who engaged in prolonged thumb sucking or pacifier use. It is also helpful for many individuals who received treatment for lip or tongue tie.
OMDs might not seem like a big deal at first, but they can lead to some serious long-term consequences if they remain untreated. Here are a few possible outcomes of an untreated OMD:
Myofunctional therapy may be paired with orthodontia, tongue tie treatment, or other therapies to produce optimum results. An effective myofunctional treatment plan has the potential to lead to many benefits:
It is also worth noting that myofunctional therapy has an impressive track record of success. Some studies show that it is 80 – 90% effective in correcting rest posture of the oral structures, swallowing, and other functions. The new habits that patients learn are often retained for many years after they complete therapy. It is even possible for myofunctional therapy to provide lifelong benefits!