OROFACIAL MYOFUNCTIONAL DISORDERS AND CRANIOFANICAL GROW
As a dynamic and complex system, the functional ‘balance’ of the stomatognathic system is essential for occlusal stability and dentofacial harmony. Orofacial myofunctional changes can modify dental occlusion and craniofacial development. An early identification, diagnosis and intervention of these alterations can positively influence the occlusion and the entire pattern of craniofacial growth/development, contributing to its stability and harmony, as well as to reducing the possibility of recurrence.
Although it is controversial whether functional changes cause malocclusion or vice versa, the main focus of clinical practice should not be to dichotomize form and function, but rather to establish a methodology of action based on an interdisciplinary dynamic of integrated and truly complementary action, which allows their understanding based on knowledge sharing and joint decision. Thus, the knowledge and identification of orofacial myofunctional alterations becomes necessary, contributing to a holistic view of the individual and, admittedly, interdependent. For this, it is important to know the role of Speech Therapy in orofacial myofunctional alterations in order to promote an adequate referral and realization of a differential diagnosis.
The author proposes to illustrate the interdependence between form and function and to question the need for a reflection on the role that the orofacial myofunctional component plays in the correction of occlusion and facial development pattern, as well as the possibilities of joint action between Pediatric Dentistry and Speech Therapy in cases where there are changes. It also intends to highlight its effective need, considering that the orofacial myofunctional intervention, when at a favorable age and occlusal situation, can modify dental positions and produce bone changes.