Call Us at (817) 479-7019

Monkey Mouths Logo

Feeding Therapy

Orofacial Myofunctional
Disorders.

Monkey Mouths Articulation

What is Oromyofunctional Therapy?

Oromyofunctional Therapy (also referred to as OMT, Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy or Myofunctional Therapy) is the comprehensive process of remediating incorrect tongue placement at rest, upon swallow and during production of speech sounds. OMT can help children and adults with orofacial myofunctional disorders (OMD) produce speech sounds more accurately as well as breathe and eat more efficiently.

Monkey Mouths Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders

What is an Orofacial Myofunctional Disorder (OMD)?

According to the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association, OMDs “are abnormal movement patterns of the face and mouth.” OMDs can be caused by dysfunctional habits and structural differences in the mouth and/or facial muscles.

Certain patterns or habits over time can exacerbate an OMD. Examples of these habits include thumb or finger sucking, prolonged pacifier/bottle use, or nail biting.

Structural abnormalities can also influence OMDs. Examples of these include enlarged tonsils, restricted range of movement of the tongue (potential tongue tie), obstructed nasal passages or high narrow palate.

What are some indications that my child or I might have an OMD?

Specific symptoms include: mouth breathing and/or drooling indicating lack of lip seal, messy eating, low tongue resting posture, difficulty chewing, head/neck tension, TMJ disorders, speech sound errors (an example of this is tongue placement between the teeth for sounds like ‘s’ and ‘z’ which presents as a “lisp”), and/or a reverse swallow (the tongue pushes forward and out).

Who can benefit from OMT?

OMT candidates seen in our clinic can be young children, teens, or adults.

What does an evaluation entail?

Our OMT evaluations at Monkey Mouths are carried out by a Monkey Mouths speech pathologist with specific training in OMD. During an evaluation, our speech pathologists will gather pertinent medical history. They will look at the strength and range of movement of the oral musculature (lips, tongue, and jaw) during speech and eating.

Our therapists will note breathing patterns as well as tongue and lip placement at rest. A formal articulation test battery will also be utilized if speech sound errors are observed. In addition, trial therapy and an explanation of the course of treatment will be provided if therapy is recommended by your evaluating therapist.

Specific symptoms include:

If therapy is recommended after evaluation, what's next?

OMT provides therapeutic techniques utilized to re-pattern and optimize oral functions. Elimination of oral habits which may influence dysfunctional muscle patterns is typically the first step. Following habit elimination, the therapist and patient are working towards nasal breathing, adequate oral resting posture, and optimal chewing and swallowing. In addition, correct tongue placement for speech sounds is targeted. All skills are addressed in conjunction with games and activities to keep sessions fun!

Who can provide OMT?

At Monkey Mouths, licensed speech pathologists with specific post-graduate training in OMD provide OMT. Our OMT trained SLPs have had continuing education to expand their knowledge base in this specific area. Most have completed the Simon Says- Tongue Tips and Tiny Tongue Tips program.

What referrals might be necessary and what collaboration with other professionals may take place?

Our speech pathologists are treating the functional abnormalities of a potential OMD.

For any structural concerns, referrals may be warranted. This could include suspected enlarged tonsils or noted functional limitations of the tongue. We respect all members of the team as we treat patients together. Some of the referrals warranted could include a dentist, orthodontist, ear nose and throat physician, pediatrician, or a referral for a sleep study.

Consider having an evaluation by a speech pathologist at Monkey Mouths if you are concerned you or your child may have an OMD. If you would like to learn more, please contact Monkey Mouths to discuss your family’s specific needs.

Schedule An Evaluation.

Consider having an evaluation by a speech pathologist at Monkey Mouths if you are concerned you or your child may have an OMD. If you would like to learn more, please contact Monkey Mouths to discuss your family’s specific needs.