Orofacial Myofunctional Disorder
Orofacial Myofunctional Evaluation
What is a tongue thrust?
In children with orofacial myofunction disorder (OMD), the tongue moves forward in an exaggerated way during speech and/or swallowing. The tongue may lie too far forward during rest or may protrude between the upper and lower teeth during speech and swallowing, and at rest.
Although a "tongue thrust" swallow is normal in infancy, it usually decreases and disappears as a child grows. If the tongue thrust continues, a child may look, speak, and swallow differently than other children of the same age. Older children may become self-conscious about their appearance.
The following may cause OMD:
enlarged tonsils and adenoids
excessive thumb or finger sucking, lip and fingernail biting, lip picking
teeth clenching and grinding
Our assessment will include the following:
Oral-Facial Examination- observation of face, jaw, lips, tongue, teeth, hard and soft palates, pharynx. Digital pictures may be taken to record dental structure.
Complete swallowing evaluation- client is observed while swallowing solid foods and liquids.
Articulation evaluation- as a result of tongue thrust, some clients incorrectly articulate sounds such as /s/, /z/, “sh”, “ch”, and “j” because their tongue slips out between the teeth. Other sounds like /t/, /d/, /n/, and /l/ may also be produced incorrectly due to weak tongue muscles.