What is Tongue Thrust Therapy and what is the big deal?
The position of the tongue at rest, when you are not talking or eating, is just as important as how the tongue functions during swallowing and chewing. When the tongue is not in the correct "spot" your body will compensate and adjust to where the tongue lays. Other muscles around your face will begin to engage in swallowing and chewing, even though it's not that muscles purpose. Lips, cheeks, along with other muscles around the head and neck will be compromised by there dysfunction causing many side effects from digestive issues (swallowing air leads to disturbances throughout your body), head, neck, and shoulder pain, facial appearance (flat, tired looking, droopy eyes), sleep disorder breathing (sleep apnea), ADD or ADHD symptoms, speech challenges, dental crowding teeth (narrow palate, tori), bed wetting until later in age for children to name a few.
Where is your tongue now? What is this correct "spot"? Is your tongue at the bottom of your mouth, between your teeth or up in the roof of your mouth called the palate? The correct "spot" is your tongue in the palate acting as natures retainer to guide growth and development. The tip of the tongue should be behind the front center teeth and the back of your tongue should be up in the roof of your mouth as well. There should be no space between the tongue and the top of your mouth.
How do I know if I have a tongue thrust? Contact me for your free 30 minute assessment and I can discuss this in detail with you and your individual situation.
I have been told I have a tongue thrust, but no one else has ever mentioned it before, why? As a dental hygienist for 18 years it was not in our curriculum to learn. It is not in the dentist education either. Myofunctional training is additional training to our education. It is in conjunction with our background dental knowledge.
What is the next step if I have a tongue thrust?
Myofunctional therapy uses an exercise based program to re-train the muscles of the tongue, cheeks, and lips to function properly. The 4 goals of myofunctional therapy is to have lips together, nasal breathing, tongue on the spot and proper swallowing.
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Call or email me at 509-420-0884