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Swallow Habit

Habit Sheet for the Correction of Abnormal Swallowing

Basic Steps to Swallow Correctly

  1. Close the back molar teeth firmly in contact with one another.
  2. Place the tip of the tongue against palate or gum ridges behind the upper front incisors.
  3. Press tongue up flat against roof of mouth, slide tongue back with sucking action.
  4. SWALLOW. Pretend your tongue is a peanut butter sandwich stuck to the roof of your mouth.
  5. Again close teeth firmly, close lips easily, tongue flat against roof of mouth, suck hard and swallow.

Remember

  • Use a mirror to watch for facial movements when practicing. Muscles around mouth should be completely relaxed when swallowing.
  • Practice on small bits of food, small swallows of liquid. Do not blow, but suck when swallowing. Keep lips closed lightly, use card or wax paper between lips as a reminder to keep lips closed.

Repeat the above basic steps many times a day and use the following exercises to learn to swallow correctly:

  1. Keep molars firmly together when swallowing any food.
  2. Lick the palate or gum ridges many times each day.
  3. Place the tip of tongue on the palate or gum ridges behind upper front teeth and keep it there while studying, playing, watching television, or in school.
  4. Pencil exercise - Place pencil across outside of upper incisors and hold in place with lips for one-half hour per day.
  5. Swallow food WITHOUT taking liquid - DO NOT "wash it down."

Night Time Suggestions

  1. Place the tip of the tongue on palate when you go to bed and try to keep it there.
  2. When you awaken in the morning, again place tip of tongue on palate.

    Follow the above basic steps of swallowing when you eat breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner.

    This information is not intended to replace the services of a dentist, physician or speech pathologist, nor does it constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional dental or medical advice.

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