Do Chew Toys Correct Oral Rest Position?

By Pam Marshalla

Chew tools from ARK Therapeutic

Q: Do you know if chewing tools are effective in correcting open mouth posture in a 2-year-old? Is there any research on this?

The question reveals that you are assuming too much one-to-one correspondence between methods of oral stimulation and results.

Chewy tools are designed to facilitate up-and-down jaw movements, and to increase the amount of time a client keeps his jaw in the “up” position. That is all they will do.

To assume that chewing on a chewy tool or toy automatically will establish correct oral rest position is too much extension of the idea. Oral rest posture entails far more than a simple analysis of jaw position. It also incorporates lip position, tongue position, head position, and status of the entire upper respiratory system. Therefore, a chewy tube, by itself, will not establish correct closed-mouth oral rest position any more than teaching a single vocabulary word will remediate a language deficit.

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