MYOBRACE & myofunctional therapy

myobrace

Many kids struggle with crooked teeth, which can lead to a variety of dental and general health problems. Fortunately, there are treatments available that can help address this issue. One such treatment is the Myobrace/LM activator, which is a specially designed myofunctional appliance. This appliance is specifically designed to address imbalanced muscle forces that can cause malalignment of the teeth, and it can be used in conjunction with myofunctional therapy for maximum effectiveness.

 

It is important to note that the causes of crooked teeth can be complex and multifaceted. To truly understand how the Myobrace/LM activator works, it is necessary to understand these underlying causes and how they can affect the health of the teeth and the body as a whole.

Causes of crooked teeth

bottle feeding

Previously, crooked teeth was thought to be due to genetic factors. It is true that genetics do play a role in teeth and jaw sizes, however, there are many contributing factors which can worsen the situation and stop the jaw from growing to its full genetic potential. Some of the contributing factors or habits of modern day kids include: Mouth breathing, bottle feeding or pacifier use, thumb sucking, tongue thrusting etc. These habits contribute to incorrect tongue and lips position causing weakening of these muscles.

Correct tongue and lips position & breathing habit

tongue position

It is essential to practice proper oral habits for overall healthy dental function. The tongue should always rest on roof of the mouth, with tongue tip behind but not touching the upper teeth. As for lips, besides eating and talking, it should always remain closed. Consequently, breathing should always be from the nose not the mouth. Myofunctional therapy aims to retrain the imbalanced muscles pushing the teeth into wrong directions.

Role of tongue and importance of tongue position

Tongue is one of the strongest muscles in our body. What happens when the tongue is in the wrong position, resting on the floor of the mouth? As the shape of the upper jaw is determined by the shape of the tongue, the upper jaw will not develop well. As a result, there will be crowding of the teeth as the permanent teeth will not have enough space to grow out straight. Furthermore, the lower jaw will be trapped within the small upper jaw and will not be able to develop as well. 

 

Low tongue position and weak tongue does not only cause crooked teeth, it causes conditions like sleep apnea, decrease chewing efficiency leading to indigestion and reduced nutrient absorption. Therefore, to correct crooked teeth and regain one’s health, we must first eliminate the habits causing incorrect tongue position and weak muscles. 

Mouth breathing and sinusitis

crooked teeth due to mouth breathing

How does one develop a mouth breathing habit? As a baby, we naturally breathe only through the nose. However somewhere along the years, bottle feeding especially in a lying position prevent babies from breathing and feeding simultaneously. They start developing the habit of gasping for air through their mouth. This causes recurrent nose blocks as the mouth is incapable of filtering bacteria and viruses, resulting in a vicious cycle of sinusitis.

 

Mouth breathing is a common cause of crooked teeth. When a child breathes through the mouth, lips are opened and tongue rests on the floor of mouth. When this happens, the teeth and jaws are not guarded by the muscles and will often grow forward and downward causing protruded teeth and gummy smile.

Sleep apnea

sleep apnea

Ever wonder why do some people grind their teeth or snore at night? When we evaluate their teeth and jaw, we can almost always see a narrow jaw with weak tongue muscles and incorrect tongue position. During sleep, the weak tongue will fall back and block the airway. When the airways is partially blocked, it creates the snoring sound. Overtime, there is a lack of oxygen and the brain sends signals prompting us to slide our jaw forward so as to increase the space for the tongue and unblocks the airway. This causes grinding which is uncontrolled and usually disturbs the sleep of you and your loved ones.

What is Myofunctional therapy & Myobrace and how does it work?

Now that we know the culprit for crooked teeth is actually weak muscles and incorrect tongue and lips position, we need to retrain these muscles in order to expand the jaw and allow the permanent teeth to come out straight. 

 

Myofunctional therapy consist of the following:

– Reestablish nose/nasal breathing –

– Strengthening Lip muscles –

– Strengthening Tongue and correcting tongue position –

– Relaxing Cheek muscles –

– Correction of Swallowing pattern –

 

With the help of a myofunctional appliance like myobrace/LM activator, the teeth are shielded from these uneven forces. The appliance helps to position the tongue as well as bringing the jaw forward to unlock the trapped lower jaw. Meanwhile exercises to strengthen the muscles are taught and practiced daily. Once the equilibrium of musculature is achieved, the appliance is no longer needed as the tongue will guide the jaw to develop the correct way.

 

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