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Myofunctional therapy in people with Down syndrome

Vanja Jurič (2017) Myofunctional therapy in people with Down syndrome. MSc thesis.

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    Myofunctional therapy is increasingly used in the practice of speech therapy. It is used for people whose symptoms include issues in the orofacial region, especially of the motoric and structural nature. This category includes people with Down syndrome whom whole-body hypotonia is characteristic of, thus including the orofacial region and consequently orofacial dysfunctions. In the theoretical part, Down syndrome and myofunctional therapy are introduced. The characteristics of the syndrome, including anatomical peculiarities of the orofacial region, are described. The characteristic of people with DS is muscle flaccidity, worse proprioception, which results in difficulties performing motoric movements. In this part, the anatomy of the orofacial region of people without anatomical peculiarities is introduced. Moreover, other causes that can lead to incorrect functioning of the muscles of the orofacial region are listed and described. Furthermore, it contains the introduction of myofunctional therapy, its beginnings, pursued goals (its main goal is eliminating harmful habits and changing movement patterns, and consequently the structure of the orofacial region itself), and when it is appropriate to use it. Different types of myofunctional therapy are listed and described, along with an explanation when to use which type. Various tools that can be used for myofunctional therapy are introduced. The theoretical part is derived from the German theory on myofunctional therapy. In the empirical part, qualitative research methods are used. With a singular case study a girl with Down syndrome is analysed and introduced. The purpose of the case study is explaining her example. The focus is on the motorics of the orofacial region and the implementation of exercises to improve the motorics of this region. The exercises and instructions on their proper performance are partially made and prepared by me, and partially taken from foreign literature (Kittel, 2014; Kittel, Förster, 2015, and Türk, Söhlermann, Rummel, 2012). During the 10 days (20th to 29th of July, 2016) I resided with the family, the exercises have been performed twice a day, in the morning and in the evening, for 20 minutes respectively or more specifically for as long as the girl was motivated and ready to take part in them. According to the girl's specifics, 10 different exercises have been selected. The exercises aim at improving nose breathing, the motorics of the lips and the tongue, as well as the coordination of the whole body. In conclusion, the exercises help to improve self-awareness, the ability to perform the exercises, and the girl paid more attention to the tonus. The results would be much better and more accurate if the exercises were performed for a longer period of time. It would also be more optimal if there was more time between the last time the exercises have been performed and he evaluation of the improvement. This way it could be observed whether the girl remembered and performed the exercises even when we did not meet or when she was automating movements.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: Down syndrome, myofunctional therapy, exercises for improving the motorics of the orofacial region, Castillo-Morales concept
    Number of Pages: 60
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    doc. dr. Martina OzbičMentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=11489865)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 4409
    Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2017 09:52
    Last Modified: 22 Mar 2017 09:52
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/4409

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