The Benefits of Breast-feeding
The function of a newborn child’s tongue compressing the nipple to feed, trains the tongue to be in the proper place in the mouth for optimum formation of the oral cavity, as well as, stimulating healthy facial growth of both the upper and lower jaws. When a newborn learns early to habitually place the tongue in the roof of the mouth upon swallowing, they are actually defining shape of their nasal and sinus cavity. Simply put, the roof of the mouth is the floor of the nose. A high vaulted, abnormally shaped roof of the mouth intrudes into the nasal cavity, setting the stage for a lifetime of airway and sinus related illnesses.
Another important function of proper tongue placement during nursing is the promotion of forward (horizontal) facial growth versus downward (vertical) or long facial growth. When the face grows in a forward direction, the top and bottom arches of the mouth are encouraged to grow to their full, round, natural potential. This growth creates enough space to allow all the teeth to erupt and help form a large airway for normal healthy breathing. When the face grows in a downward direction the lower jaw continually grows down and back. This creates a long flat and even convex face which encroaches into the airway, making it more difficult for proper oxygen flow during breathing. In turn, more oxygen helps promote better sleep habits, more energy, and a clearer thought process.
Ultimately, every mother wants the best possible health for their children. Call us to evaluate and discuss your child’s facial growth.
Slides are courtesy of Dr German Ramirez-Yanez (DDS, MDSc, PhD)