Orofacial dysfunctions can hinder the growth and development of craniocervical and orofacial regions. It can also reduce the stability of various dental and orthodontic treatments. A new concept- the myofunctional therapy is a new treatment option that helps harmonize orofacial functionalities, which can be induced with the guidance of speech therapists.
Duration of an average myofunctional therapy can be one to two years, since there is a significant waiting time involved before the treatment could actually begin. The outcomes of the treatment can differ in many cases as well. The effect is different in different individuals.
The treatment of myofunctional therapy was designed to cater to the needs of orofacial muscles. The method is supervised by an orthodontist.
The study for the same was conducted among children first. Children between the age group of 5 to 12 were chosen for the same. These children were chosen, owing to the fact their orofacial issues like non closure of lips, mouth breathing issues that were habituals, weird swallowing patterns, stigmatism.
In most children, if not all, the need for the myofunctional therapy was seen. However, these children were divided into two groups. One group was referred to myofunctional therapists, while the other was referred to face former therapists. The overall time of observation in both the cases was nine months.
When the treatment therapy completed, the children of both the groups were seen having an improved orofacial function. The children who were provided the face former therapy however, implicated more palatal tongue positioning while swallowing. They also exhibited a stronger lip pressure and their mouth was closed off, habitually. The results of the face former therapy were thus found to be better than the ones found for the myofunctional therapy.
Children of the face former group displayed positive results when it came to respiratory patterns. Their results were significantly better in comparison to those who were treated with myofunctional therapy.
When it came to results on swallowing, the children provided with the face former therapy were better. The results were viewed with the help of palatography. Not all children reached a good level of physiological swallowing. Yet the results of the face former’s were better than those of the myofunctional group children.
While as far as the lip strength of a child is concerned, after the experimentation it was found out the the lip strength of the children in both groups improved significantly. However, children in the face former group improved quickly.
In case of sigmatism, children of both groups were corrected. However, the improvements in both the groups were not remarkable.
In both groups in some children sigmatism could be corrected, but the observed improvements were not statistically significant.
Therefore, the face former therapy is known to be a better option here. It can be a great alternative for the myofunctional therapy. The results led to effective improvements and changes, except the issue of sigmatism.