Author(s): Bckman B, GrevrSjlander AC, Holm AK, Johansson I
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Abstract OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to describe oral development and morphology in 18-month-old children with Down syndrome (DS) treated with palatal plates in combination with structured communication and speech training. The aim is further to describe the design of the palatal plates, compliance in their use and to give a brief report of their effect on oral motor function and speech. SAMPLE AND METHODS: Forty-two children with DS were followed from < or = 6 months of age until 18+/-3 months old. In addition to language intervention, and oral motor and sensory stimulation provided by speech therapists for all children with DS in Sweden, palatal plates provided by dentists are included in the training programme. In the evaluation, the children in the project were compared with two control groups of children matched for age; one group of children with DS who had not been treated with palatal plates, and one group of children with normal development. RESULTS: Compared to the children with normal development, both groups of children with DS had fewer teeth erupted and a lower prevalence of sucking habits. Deviant morphology of the tongue in the form of diastase, lingua plicata or a sulcus in the anterior third of the tongue was only seen in children with DS. All children with normal development had positive values for overjet compared to 53\% of the children with DS. The palatal plates were used 2-3 times daily for a total mean time of 15 min. Compliance in use of the plates decreased with age, mainly due to eruption of teeth and subsequent loss of retention. Evaluation of oral motor function and speech show that the children with DS in the project had better motor prerequisites for articulation than the control children with DS. CONCLUSION: Palatal plate therapy did not affect oral parameters, i.e., eruption of teeth, types and prevalence of sucking habits, tongue morphology and symptoms of hypotonia. In combination with oral motor and sensory stimulation, palatal plate therapy had a positive effect on oral motor performance and prerequisites for articulation.
This article was published in Int J Paediatr Dent
and referenced in Advancements in Genetic Engineering