Consequences of Poor Chewing
The knowledge in the world of dentistry is expanding. Dentistry now includes the study of myofunctional therapy. Dental hygienists around the world are learning about workings of the facial muscles. Myo is the suffix pertaining to muscles. This also gives myofunctional therapy an open direction which can be involved in many areas of the snoring complex. These includes, children, latching on to the breast, stop thumb sucking, decrease snoring, and become accustomed and so much more.
Here are four things about chewing that you may not know assembled.
1) Western-style baby weaning. The chewing process is mostly bypassed or delayed. This may have consequences on growth and development of the orofacial complex. Early chewing helps the position and the development of the chewing muscles and the salivary glands. Hence these processes are associated with the effectiveness of chewing.
2) With the first tooth erupting in babies mouths, the mouth is ready to begin experiencing solid foods of various textures. The cheek muscles are developed at this time. This type of chewing causes these masseters to not be needed during breastfeeding or nursing. Currently, there is a movement to bring back solid food during weaning called baby-led weaning.
3) Anthropologists and dentists are able to document the epigenetic impact of processed foods and the development of the complex. Studying ancient skulls they are finding a normal decrease. Showing the volume of both, skulls in the 12,000 years that modern food appeared. The process has been accelerating. Since modern processed and fast foods have been available, they don’t require much chewing. Therefore do not require the application of strong forces on the orofacial complex.
4) There is an epigenetic impact of chewing, bone growth and development. The chewing of hard food may be delayed, or withheld during weaning within the early years. Therefore, this is causing the bones of the palate to become much thinner. In the animal models, solid food was presented since the beginning.
What’s the result?
Finally, these all have some sort of impacts and our ability to chew. It also affects the growth and health of the sinuses and oropharynx (the throat and lower sinuses) by extension. This also can be a reason so many people are now suffering from airway issues that culminate in sleep apnea.
by Licia C. Paskay, MS, CCC-SLP.