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  • Writer's pictureCourtney Huffman

Oral Rest Posture 101

Updated: Oct 6, 2021

Correct oral rest posture is a main goal of orofacial myofunctional therapy. Learn what is and why it matters.

My Tongue Is Up.

My Lips Are Closed.

And I Am Breathing Through My Nose.

I teach the brief poem above to help my patients remember the right things to do. The only part this poem is missing is that the teeth should be slightly apart...but I have not yet figured out a away to make that rhyme. I'm open to suggestions :).

It might sound too simple to be true, but careful attention to how your lips and tongue rest and the way you breathe can make a world of difference in your overall health.

Sometimes the simplest things make the biggest difference.

If you’re listening to a conversation, reading this post, watching television, doing schoolwork, scrolling through Instagram, sleeping, or exercising (basically anything but talking, laughing, or singing):

  • your tongue should rest gently and comfortably in your palate (roof of your mouth), NOT touching your teeth in any way or resting on the floor of your mouth

  • your lips should be sealed

  • your teeth should just be slightly apart (about 2-3 mm) AND

  • you should be able to easily breathe through your nose day and night

How the muscles of our mouth and face rest influences how the bones of our jaws and face grow. Improper rest posture is associated with misalignment of teeth, poor occlusion (bad bite), narrow jaws, dysfunctional swallows, disordered breathing, and other harmful health consequences. At minimum, poor oral rest posture can pretty much guarantee a visit to an orthodontist will be in your future. Establishing correct rest posture from infancy will positively impact the way your mouth and face grow, the efficacy and quality of your breathing, and your overall health. If you haven’t been doing this all your life, it’s not too late to change and make a positive difference.

If you find any aspect of correct oral rest posture difficult to do with ease 24/7 (outside of the occasion stuffiness from an illness) seek the help of a certified orofacial myologist who will help you find and address your causes of poor oral rest posture. Please feel free to contact us here or schedule your evaluation here.

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