Zeroing in on Link between Jaw and Speech
About thirty years ago I started on my quest to fix my “bite problem” and equally as important….to fix my jaw so I was able to speak more comfortably. My articulation sounded fine, so I really did not receive much empathy from those around me, which also included a string of dentists and speech therapists. Everybody was always like…”but you sound fine.” The dentists which examined my jaw and my “bite” said everything appeared to be “normal.” The speech therapists that I worked with followed longstanding methodologies that focused on phonetics and tongue exercises. After decades of wearing night guards and doing speech exercises, I still struggled with speaking comfortably. I actually started to speak less and less. I would avoid things like using the phone or going to people events and mixers. My articulation sounded fine….but it really was a cumbersome effort to even have a casual conversation with someone.
What I could never figure out was why dentists and speech language pathologists were unaware of how jaw positioning could effect speech. Each field….Dentistry or Speech Pathology seemed to be void of a link between the two specialties. Ironically in my blog, just twelve days ago, I went on a rant about where is the missing link? Where is that link between dentistry and speech pathology? And not until a few days ago, did I find it.
I found and purchased a book off of Amazon….”Assessment and Treatment of the Jaw” by Sara Rosenfeld-Johnson, M.S., CCC/SLP. In this textbook, Sara rather specifically addresses the link between jaw positioning and speech. There are other speech topics in this manual, but I am mainly concerned with the jaw/speech material. Recommended exercises and “TalkTools” are suggested too.
It appears that the book…”Assessment and Treatment of the Jaw” is written for SLP professionals, but you know what?….This journey for proper treatment has taught me a lot….and at this point, I’m taking it on myself from here!!