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Orofacial Myofunctional Practice is the study of orofacial (mouth and face) myo- (muscle) functional disorders.
Orofacial Myofunctional Practice examines orofacial structure, function, posture and habit patterns, that may disrupt normal development and stability of the teeth, mouth and jaws and affect how well the upper airway works for breathing and voice, night and day. More recently, advances sleep medicine recognise the role of airway for good quality sleep at night, & hails a new era and new role for myofunctional science and practice in medicine.
Orofacial Myofunctional Practice is based upon dental science: however, Orofacial Myofunctional therapy is not dental treatment per se.
Orofacial Myofunctional Practice draws upon behavioural and neuromuscular science, the psychology of habit change, and a thorough understanding of the functional science around swallowing chewing breathing speech voice and resonance. Professionals who train in this specialty area are primarily Speech Pathologists and Dental Hygienists. However, many professionals show an interest in this area and use OFM adjunctively in their patient management, including Dentists, Orthodontists, Osteopaths, Physiotherapists and Chiropractors.
Your Medical Specialist, Dentist, Orthodontist or Speech Pathologist, may have referred you, because they have already formed an opinion that you would benefit from an Orofacial Myofunctional assessment and treatment program. Best results occur with a team effort. Early detection and treatment is ideal but therapy can occur at any age.
Common reasons for referral:
Some patients who have been active on the internet, find information about this field and refer themselves. If you are self-referring, ask your Orofacial Myofunctional therapist about specialist training they have in this area of expertise. Where did they train? When did they train? How many patients have they seen with the type of problem you are presenting with? You can ask for a professional reference that shows background clinical experience and/or proof of training. What professional support networks or associations do they belong to?
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Orofacial Myofunctional Practice is the study of patterns of muscle use and rest postures, of the face and the mouth
...the demands in your life and timing of therapy are important factors in determining the ‘start-point’ for a program and will influence your success...
Early detection and treatment is ideal but therapy can occur at any age