Orthognathic surgery, Quality of life, Breathing, Speech, Chewing, Swallowing, Myofunctional Therapy


INTRODUCTION: Some proposals of myofunctional therapy directed to individuals undergoing orthognathic surgery have been presented which promote the orofacial myofunctional balance, enhancing the treatment stability. OBJECTIVE: To verify the effect of myofunctional therapy on orofacial functions and quality of life in individuals undergoing orthognathic surgery. METHOD: A total of 24 individuals, with mean age of 26.5 years, participated in the study. They were divided into two groups, namely with myofunctional therapy (N=12) and without myofunctional therapy (N=12). Breathing, chewing, swallowing, and speech were evaluated from tests established by the MBGR Orofacial Myofunctional Evaluation, using the scores specified in the protocol. The quality of life (QL) was evaluated using the Oral Health Impact Profile-OHIP-14 questionnaire, which comprises 14 questions that measure the individual´s perception of the impact of their oral conditions on their well-being in recent months. The evaluations were carried out before and 3 months after orthognathic surgery. The myofunctional therapy was initiated 30 days after surgery, with exercises aimed at improving orofacial mobility, tone and sensitivity, as well as the training of normal physiological patterns of orofacial functions. The comparisons between orofacial functions and the study groups were verified by the Mann-Whitney test, using a significance level of 5%. RESULTS: After surgery, the individuals without myofunctional therapy presented with an improvement in breathing and oral health-related quality of life (p<0.05), while in the group undergoing myofunctional therapy there was improvement in all aspects investigated (p<0.05). Comparison between the study groups showed better performance in breathing (p=0.002), chewing (p=0.012), swallowing (p=0.002) and speech (0.034) in individuals who underwent myofunctional therapy. CONCLUSION: The orthognathic surgery alone improved breathing and quality of life. However, the surgical procedure associated with myofunctional treatment, besides improving all oral functions investigated and quality of life, provided better functional performance in breathing, chewing, swallowing and speech. This study’s participants demonstrated the effectiveness of the orofacial myofunctional intervention.