MRC Clinics

What is Myofunctional Orthodontics?

It is an alternative to traditional orthodontic treatments that allows the correction of orthodontic problems (malocclusion) without the use of braces at a wider age range.   The use of a series of removable appliances (Myobrace®) and myofunctional exercises are the basic components of this treatment approach.

Plenty of scientific research have shown that the major cause for malocclusion is soft tissue dysfunction. In contrast to traditional orthodontics with braces, in myofunctional orthodontics we assist the patient in the correction of the bad oral habits that contribute to poor oral-facial development.

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Advanced Lightwire Functional (ALF)

ALFThe Advanced Lightwire Functional (ALF) appliance was invented by Dr. Darick Nordstrom in 1982, in a process of discovery while working with osteopaths.  The ALF addresses the alignment of the bones using principles of cranial osteopathy. Like no other orthodontic appliance, the ALF contributes to the physiological motion within the cranial and facial structures.  This motion can facilitate the whole body's self healing potential and contribute to the improvement of other physiological functions like breathing.   
As a part of our myofunctional orthodontics program, the ALF addresses the dental arches form.  With wider dental arches it is easier to correct the tongue resting posture and get straighter teeth with little time with or even without braces.  Enhancing the form of the dental arches using a bio-compatible appliance like the ALF, along with eliminating the dysfunctional habits that contribute to crowded teeth, are fundamental in achieving more stability of a dental alignment that could last for a Life time!

Myobrace®

Myobrace®Soft tissue dysfunction implies that the muscles in the affected area, in this case the oral and facial, are not working properly. It includes open mouth posture, tongue thrusting, incorrect swallowing and other dysfunctional habits. These habits may cause orthodontic problems (malocclusion) like crowded teeth, spacings, deep overbite, excessive overjet, underbite, etcetera, and may also cause post-orthodontic treatment relapse. Myofunctional Orthodontics is a proven effective technique to treat soft tissue dysfunction and malocclusion in the developing children.

With the use of the Myobrace® appliance systems, exercises, good nutrition and educational activities we may obtain better oral and facial development and straighter teeth without the need of braces.

Braces

This is still an option for our patients that for some reason prefer this traditional orthodontic treatment. Also we may consider the use of braces in specific situations in which they may be useful like space distribution, severe rotations or fully impacted teeth.

For better orthodontic treatment results and better stability, we do recommend the use of the T4B® appliance, which is a Myobrace® that can be use with braces.  We also include some myofunctional exercises in this treatment option.

However, as we described before, there is always potential enamel and root damage with the use of braces, among other disadvantages when compared to Myobrace®. We recommend avoiding their use whenever possible.  Every orthodontic treatment option requires motivated patients, therefore compliance and commitment are always essential for optimal results.

Orthopedic Appliances

A low tongue posture position, mostly cause for mouth breathing during the developing years, affects the dental arch form. The narrow upper dental arch that develops does not allow enough room for the tongue, perpetuating the low tongue postural habit.  Furthermore, if the tongue does not have enough room, it cannot function normally, and affects the speech and the normal swallowing pattern.  As part of the Myofunctional Orthodontic treatment; we recommend the use of removable or fixed orthopedic appliances in cases that require a considerable amount of dental arch development.

Orofacial Myology Therapy

This treatment consists of a series of exercises that aid in the development of the necessary skills for better oral and facial muscular function.  It is a habituation program that can help both children and adults. Since this treatment does not include the use of appliances, it is intended for patients with very mild orthodontic problems, patients that are currently wearing braces, post-orthodontic treatment and relapse cases, and for mild TMJ disorders relief.

Treatment of TMJ Disorders

Multiple factors may be involved in the development of TMJ disorders.  It has been related to up to ninety percent of the headaches in the American population. It is also categorized among the characteristic symptoms of fibromyalgia.  Furthermore, facial muscular imbalances caused by soft tissue dysfunction and changes in the occlusion (bite contacts) are mostly involve in the development of its symptoms.  Our myofunctional treatment program especially developed for patients with TMJ disorders includes the use of the TMJ Appliance®, orofacial myology therapy, breathing techniques, nutritional assessment, and dietary and supplements recommendations.
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Our patients and parents say:

I came to Life Dentistry for help with my TMJ. Dr. Medina has been wonderful and has shown me that we can make a difference without invasive treat...

Devlin Duvall
Jul 28, 2015
A welcoming and friendly environment is what you are going to find here at Life Dentistry.

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