The Academy of Applied Myofunctional Sciences first congress begins September 9 at the Biltmore in Los Angeles. With this in mind Shirley Gutkowski, RDH, BSDH, offered a few facts about chewing in the recent edition of DentistryIQ:

  1. In Western-style baby weaning, the chewing process is mostly bypassed or delayed, which may have consequences on the growth and development of the orofacial complex.
  2. When babies have their first tooth erupting, the mouth is ready to begin experiencing solid foods of various textures. This is the time when masseter muscles (cheek muscles) are developed for chewing. Currently there is a movement to bring back solid food during weaning called baby-led weaning.3. Animal models show that when chewing hard food is delayed or withheld during weaning and in the early years, the bones of the palate grows thinner than those animals in which solid food was presented since the beginning.