The International Association of Facial Growth Guidance (Orthotropics®)
This association represents all those clinicians and technicians who believe that ideal development of the face and jaws is dependent on correct 'oral posture'. Correct posture should be with the tongue resting against the palate, with the lips sealed and the teeth in light contact for 4 to 8 hours a day. We are committed to improving unattractive faces and crowded teeth by guiding the growth of the jaws horizontally while the patient is young, by means of appliances (Facial Orthotropics), supported by postural training of the tongue, lips and cheeks (Oral Myology).
Most children start out with attractive faces but if they leave their mouths open, their face will grow vertically and they are likely to develop into unattractive teenagers with long faces, flat cheeks, prominent noses, and protruding front teeth. Alternatively they may have the common habit of resting the tongue between the teeth and sucking against them when swallowing. This will cause the teeth to tilt inwards and crowd, causing the middle of the face to look concave. Many types of treatment will straighten teeth but most tend to pull them back, necessitating extractions and further reducing room for the tongue.
Orthotropists believe that this is detrimental to facial development and that ideal facial growth together with permanent straightening of all the teeth only being achieved if room is provided for the tongue and the patient is taught to keep their mouth closed and swallow correctly.