The purpose of this study was to identify and compare the results of the findings from speech-language pathology evaluations for orofacial function including tongue and lip rest postures, tonus, articulation and speech, voice and language, chewing, and deglutition in children who had a history of mouth breathing. The diagnoses for mouth breathing included: allergic rhinitis, adenoidal hypertrophy, allergic rhinitis with adenoidal hypertrophy; and/or functional mouth breathing. This study was conducted with on 414 subjects of both genders, from 2 to 16-years old. A team consisting of 3 speech-language pathologists, 1 pediatrician, 1allergist, and 1 otolaryngologist, evaluated the patients. Multidisciplinary clinical examinations were carried out (complete blood counting, X-rays, nasofibroscopy, audiometry). The two most commonly found etiologies were allergic rhinitis, followed by functional mouth breathing. Of the 414 patients in the study, 346 received a speech-language pathology evaluation. The most prevalent finding in this group of 346 subjects was the presence of orofacial myofunctional disorders. The most frequently orofacial myofunctional disorder identified in these subjects who also presented mouth breathing included: habitual open lips rest posture, low and forward tongue rest posture and lack of adequate muscle tone. There were also no statistically significant relationships identified between etiology and speech-language diagnosis. Therefore, the specific type of etiology of mouth breathing does not appear to contribute to the presence, type, or number of speech-language findings which may result from mouth breathing behavior.


mouth breathing, etiology, diagnosis, speech-language pathology, orofacial myofunctional disorders