Continuing Education is so important and you can always learn something new. You don’t know, what you don’t know. So it is important to keep learning every chance you get. No one can ever take knowledge away from you!
Today has been a day of continuing education. I first started by day out with taking an online course on Lip incompetence: causes, symptoms, and treatment considerations which was written by Angie Lehman who has OMT of York. The lips are so important and need to be evaluated to make sure that are working properly. Everyone needs to have enough strength to support the oral equilibrium between the lips and the tongue.
I then listened to A Systematic Approach to Keeping a Child’s Mouth and Upper Airway ‘in shape’ and ‘on track’ from Birth by Diane Bahr. Her website is http://www.agesandstages.net/courses.php. She also wrote the book Nobody Ever told me (or my mother) that! Everything from bottles and breathing to healthy speech development. I highly recommend this book. There is so much information as a dental hygienist that they don’t teach you in school but it definitely can have an impact on the oral facial development. I have so much respect for SLP’s since my son starting working with a speech therapist.
This was so eye opening. Things I look back on that I didn’t do with my son but then there were some things that I did do!
After my breastfeeding journey (which definitely didn’t go as planned) and the knowledge base that I have gained realize that breastfeeding is amazing. It is important for the infant to have the breastmilk but is also important for orofacial development as well. I learned that a child should be able to start drinking from an opening cup at 12 months as well as a straw cup but make sure the straw is not resting on the tongue.
Another interesting fact was about premature babies and how the NICU does a great job in the hospital with the babies but then the families don’t have the support they need when they get home. She stated that they usually doesn’t get referrals until the children are 15-18 months when they should really see a feeding specialist right away. The pacifier needs to be gone no later than 10 months because there is research that suggests that this is highly linked the middle ear infections (this was one this that I failed at because my son had his until 18 months). If you want to get rid of the pacifier you can replace it at 3-4 months with a chewy tube. Just some food for thought.
If you ever have any questions about orofacial development I’m here to help in any way I can. And if you need help I’m not able to give I can find someone who is able to. I have a great network on individuals that I can get in contact with to help.