What's Happening?

The Jaw Epidemic: Recognition, Origins, Cures, and Prevention

 Almost everyone has a myofunctional disorder. Currently we are seeing a hidden epidemic of small jaws, small airways, and worsening health in kids and adults. Why is that? We have to take a step back into history and see the skulls of our ancestors and their way of living to see what is happening. Below is a roman skull. Notice the straight and aligned teeth. Notice the wisdom teeth. These are signs of proper development of the jaw and airway. Straight and aligned teeth are not genetic. Room for wisdom teeth to grow is not genetic. Our ancestors had different lifestyle compared to today. Women breastfed exclusively for a while, there were no bottles, sippy cups, or pacifiers. There were no pureed foods or melt-able finger foods. There were no processed food. Their diet consisted of chewing on twigs, sticks, leaves, eating nuts, or chewing on bones. Being more difficult to chew or suck, these all worked and exercised the muscles in the face. The breastfeeding and non existence of bottles, pacifiers, and sippy cups, led to proper posture of the tongue. The tongue is a natural palatal (roof of the mouth) expander. Improper tongue posture, small jaws leading to small airways is often what we see in today's society due to modern industrialization (ex. less or no breastfeeding, bottles, sippy cups, pacifiers, soft food diet).

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Below is a picture comparing hunters and gatherers from today's airways and palate. Notice the palate in the hunters and gathers is wide.  Also notice the straight teeth and wisdom teeth in the hunters and gatherers. The airways are large. In the skull of modern industrial, the palate is narrow teeth are crooked, and the airways below are much smaller.

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Below are pictures of small palates that cause the teeth to become crooked or the smile to become "gummy." Small palates means small airways, means lifelong unhealthy lifestyle unless the root of the issues are solved. Remember, the tongue is a natural palatal expander. These patients would have to go through palatal expansion to expand the palate and airways and myofunctional therapy to correct the low tongue posture that caused these mouth to become this way. Low tongue posture also leads to a variety of serious health conditions. See below in "Low Tongue Posture and the Vagus Nerve"

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Low Tongue Posture and the Vagus Nerve

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The Vagus nerve is one of the primary parasympathetic cranial nerves and drives the digestive system. It is one of the most important nerves in the body.  It has an important role in regulation of metabolic homeostasis and plays a key role in neuro-endocrine-immune axis to maintain homeostasis through its different pathways. It helps regulate many critical aspects of human physiology including heart rate, blood pressure, sweating, decreasing inflammation, digestion, and even speaking. Vagus nerve stimulation is important in preventing, treating, and reducing the health effect below.  Vagus  nerve stimulation has been shown to help treat or reduce seizures, epilepsy, mental illness (anxiety, depression, PTSD), digestive diseases and issues, pelvic floor disorders, celiac disease, gluten intolerance, cognitive decline, reflex, and more. Vagus nerve stimulation can be used to treat a wide variety of conditions. Vagus nerve stimulation can be achieved with proper tongue posture (tongue suctioned to the roof of the mouth or palate). When someone has low tongue posture, the vagus nerve is not being stimulated which can cause many detrimental or uncomfortable health issues. A myofunctional therapy  program will help you achieve vagus nerve stimulation by accomplishing proper tongue posture.