A Holistic Approach to Dentistry Located in River Falls, WI

A Holistic Approach to Dentistry
Located in River Falls, WI

Helping our patients learn more


Myofunctional Therapy

In This Blog...

Physical therapy for the tongue and facial muscles to restore normal function. The goal is to disorganize poor oral habits and re-pattern to optimize oral and facial function. Improper function of the head/neck muscles, lips and tongue can cause issues with speech, breathing, sleep, growth, chewing, swallowing, immunity, myofascial tension, TMJ and other seemingly unrelated issues.

  • Myofunctional therapy is noninvasive and is beneficial for children and adults
  • In proper function: 1) Breathing is through the nose, 2) Lip seal is natural, 3) Tongue rests in palate, 4) Swallow pattern is age-appropriate 
  • MyoMunchee—soft, silicone oral device that promotes healthy chewing and jaw stimulation/nasal breathing/correct swallow pattern/calms gag reflex/pacifier elimination/supports sinus/ears and so much more! Check out myomunchee.com, several excellent education videos. Just like any part of the body, the jaw and muscles need the right kind of exercise to stay healthy. They also have a MuncheeMoves 5-minute video for younger kids who have trouble sitting still or would benefit from improving core strength. It’s really fun! MyoMunchees can be beneficial for both children and adults.
  • Check in and ask yourself throughout day… Nasal breathing or mouth breathing? Lip seal easy or hard? Where is my tongue? Low in floor of mouth? Resting high in palate? Somewhere in between?
  • Rest tongue gently on palatal (bumpy) gum tissue behind upper front teeth (the “N” spot), keep teeth lightly separated, make sure lips are sealed and breathing exclusively through nose. Can hum with tip of tongue on “N” spot or cluck to start to get the sensation of how tongue should lay like a blanket across palate. Is it natural or forced? (This is difficult for some w/o therapy and sometimes impossible in people w/ high/narrow palates or tongue ties w/o orthodontic and/or surgical intervention).
  • When the tongue is resting in the palate, optimal airway function can occur. We breathe better through our nose and the tongue serves as a stabilizer for the jaw as well as a space maintainer, keeping the teeth stable, TMJs relaxed, and the nervous system calm.
  • Orofacial exercises used as adjuncts to managing sleep apnea focus on strengthening the back of the tongue, soft palate and throat