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Orofacial Myology

Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy--What is it?

Myofunctional therapy is the treatment of an orofacial muscle imbalance, an incorrect swallowing pattern, TMJ muscle dysfunction syndrome, and/or the elimination of bruxing, clenching, or sucking habits. The main muscles of concern to the orofacial myologist are the temporalis, the masseter, and the internal and external pterygoids, the buccinators, the orbicularis oris and mentalis. Oral myofunctional therapy is a form of oral facial orthopedics. It involves exercises and  stimulation designed to inhibit inappropriate oral  behaviors and/or strengthen appropriate oral muscle functioning.

Oral myofunctional therapy is a structured, individualized treatment for retraining and restoring normal oral functioning. It seeks to inhibit incorrect muscle movements and develop normal, easy functions of oral rest posture, oral stage of swallowing and speech articulation. Therapy may include any or all of the following:

● Elimination of damaging oral habits
● Reduction of unnecessary tension and pressure in the muscles of the face and mouth
● Strengthening of muscles that do not adequately  support normal functioning
● Development of normal resting postures of the tongue, jaw, and facial muscles
● Establishment of normal biting, chewing, and swallowing patterns

DePalma, A.-M. C., & Shirley Gutkowski. (2012). In H. Limeback (Ed.), Comprehensive preventive dentistry (pp. 369-370). chapter, Wiley.


Selected Articles

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Selected Chapters--Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy