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Myofunctional Therapy

Myofunctional therapy is a program used to correct the improper function of the tongue and facial muscles. It involves strengthening the tongue and oral facial muscles by teaching individuals how to engage the muscles to the appropriate position. 

Myofunctional disorders are frequently associated with speech sound disorders or articulation difficulties. It is very important that a Speech Therapist treating speech also has an understanding and knowledge about possible associated myofunctional disorders as these can often lead to more serious health implications later in life.




There can be a number of signs you can look for if you suspect you or your child might have a myofunctional disorder such as;

  • Open mouth posture with lips apart

  • Forward tongue rest posture

  • Behavioural problems

  • Concentration difficulties

  • Problems with teeth such as crowding or an abnormal bite: overbite, underbite, open bite etc.

  • Drooling and poor oral control, specifically past the age of 2 years

  • Nonnutritive sucking habits, including pacifier use after age of 12 months, as well as finger, thumb, or tongue sucking

  • Distorted productions of /s, z/ often with an interdental lisp. Abnormal lingual dental articulatory placement for /t, d, l, n, ʧ, ʤ, ʃ, ʓ/

You or your child might experience one or more of these symptoms and not realise it is related to a myofunctional disorder.

There are many symptoms that you or your child might experience.

  • Teeth grinding

  • Poor sleep

  • Fussy eater,

  • TMJ / TMD or jaw pain

  • Social issues

  • Neck or back tension or pain

  • Sensitive gag reflex



  • About 25% of children with ADHD have undiagnosed myofunctional disorders

  • 50% of the population have a tongue tie that can lead to sleep apnea, snoring and many other health problems.

  • 60% of malocclusions are caused by digit sucking or a sucking habit, and 40% of digit suckers have learning problems.

  • Increased risk for learning difficulties and cognitive delay

  • Increased risk for receptive language and comprehension problems

  • Increased risk for speech difficulties

There is a lot of research but a few articles of interest are listed here


  • Association between Childhood Sleep-Disordered Breathing and Disruptive Behaviour Disorders in childhood and Adolescence (Constantin E., et al)

  • Sleep Disorders as a Risk to Language Learning and Use (Karla K. McGregor and Rebecca M. Alper)

  • Sleep-Disordered Breathing and Verbal Skills in School-Aged Community Children

  • Sarah Morsbach Honaker, Ph.D., David Gozal, M.D., Jessica Bennett, M.A., Oscar Sans Capdevila, M.D., Karen Spruyt, Ph.D.

    • Children with sleep disordered breathing are at greater risk for language disorders and receptive language difficulties.

  • A frequent phenotype for paediatric sleep apnoea: short lingual frenulum, Authors: Christian Guilleminault, Shehlanoor Huseni and Lauren Lo

  • Short Lingual Frenulum and Obstructive Sleep Apnea in Children, Authors: Yu-Shu Huang1 , Stacey Quo2 , J Andrew Berkowski3 and Christian Guilleminaul

  • Ankyloglossia as a risk factor for maxillary hypoplasia and soft palate elongation: A functional - morphological study, A J Yoon , S Zaghi, S Ha, C S Law, C Guilleminault, S Y Liu

ROSEMARY NICHOLSON is one of the most highly skilled PROMPT Therapists in the country. 



All clinicians working in Speech Therapy South London are PROMPT trained and receive mentoring.




Call us today for a consultation


07951 228557


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Clinic Locations

London Clinic:

3D Hillgate Place

18-20 Balham Hill Rd

SW12 9ER

SpeechTherapy South London

Surrey Clinic:

4 Chestnut Suite,

Guardian House, Borough RD


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