An Orofacial Myofunctional disorder happens when a person has an abnormal lip, jaw, or tongue position during rest, eating or speaking. You may also see OMD in people over the age of 5 who have damaging habits such as thumb sucking, tooth grinding, jaw clenching or tongue thrusting.
Myofunctional therapy is an alternative to traditional orthodontic treatment, in which the orthodontist uses Myofunctional techniques to focus on poor muscular habits that appear to be the underlying cause of orthodontic issues such as crooked teeth, misaligned jaws and sleep apnea.
Myofunctional Appliances for Children
Myofunctional appliances are designed to correct myofunctional habits in growing children and have proven successful in orthodontic correction without braces. By wearing a simple removable appliance for an hour a day and all night, many children never require braces to straighten their permanent teeth. These treatment options can comfortably straighten teeth, adjust the bite, and correct sub-optimal muscular habits.
How Does Myofunctional Orthodontic Treatment Work?
Myofunctional orthodontic treatments are conducted in phases, personalized to address the specific needs of each patient. Typically, a temporary removable oral appliance is administered to be worn one to two hours a day, and possibly at night while sleeping.
Depending on the specific needs of the patient, various appliances could be exercised as well. In addition, an educational program may be used to improve myofunctional habits. This can include certain swallowing, breathing, tongue, cheek, and lip exercises.