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My own journey and thoughts on straight-on progress photos
Though I’ve been working on tongue posture since August 2017, I think I have only been properly mewing for two months. Thank you so so much to this forum for explaining things in a way that clicks for me. I’ve been adjusting my routine and posture, and I finally feel like things are working, mainly “throat posture”, focusing on the sphenoid, open-mouth hard chewing, and working on body posture starting from the soles of the feet.
I am already seeing significant improvement in my body posture. My cheekbones and cheeks are beginning to become more defined. There is ever so slightly more room for my tongue on my upper palate. I definitely feel the pressure from my throat radiating throughout all of my face. When I stretch, I am noticing pops at the base of my skull and around ears on my right side, which is the drooping side.
I can hear much better!! I used to experience sound as flat, and had a very hard time hearing well with a lot of ambient noise and now, suddenly, sound feels 3D.
I am not using any appliances. Only tongue and body posture, with a bit of facial exercise thrown in. I’m also doing binaural beats which feels fantastic, so even if it’s not doing anything, please don’t burst my bubble!
Just to give some background, I’m 32, female, with mild scoliosis. I had two sets of braces as a child from ages 7 to 16, one set to fix my underbite, and then another set to align my teeth, with 4 teeth extracted. I now have an overbite, with a receding chin and canted smile. There was enough room for my wisdom teeth to erupt without issue, so I still have those, which I’m hoping will help in this process.
I definitely have forward head posture, and a sloping forehead. My face is short and round, only slightly oval. I have pretty significant asymmetry in my face. Though I’ve always breathed through my nose and kept my mouth closed, I don’t ever recall my tongue being at the roof of my mouth.
Despite all of this, I often like the way I look straight on (not just in the mirror but also in “good” candid photos), but my profile is quite a sight.
STRAIGHT ON PHOTOS
I know there’s been a lot of discussion about before and after photos, and how straight-on shots are not really the best measure. I agree with this, BUT!!:
I had taken quite a number of straight-on shots in 2017, for progress in skin care and facial exercises. I recreated the light and position in January 2018, as the spot I take photos in is pretty specific. The change is REMARKABLE, too much so. My nose looks straighter, it looks like I have had significant length in my chin. My lips look better proportioned. My face has elongated into a more oval shape instead of round. Still asymmetrical, but definitely an improved face.
I took a TON of photos to try to get the same proportions as 2017, and could only do it with contorting my body and craning my head forward in an uncomfortable way. Back in 2017, my selfies for progress all have the same face proportions (September 2016 through January 2017). Now, all of my selfies look different from 2017, but are consistent within themselves (January 2018), if that makes sense.
I showed the before and after photo set to friends, and they’ve independently said that now I finally look in photos in the way they’ve seen me in real life — which, though isn’t exactly what I wanted, is incredibly encouraging.
This leads me to believe that straight on shots with significant change are more about how body posture affects the distance of the nose from the camera, and subsequently how the camera captures everything else.
I have seen no change in my profile shots, but I’m not worried, as I can feel change, and that’s what matters so far, as I’m only truly two months into a proper routine (or as best I can be in this moment).
So, I wouldn’t discount straight-on shots, at least for self-evaluation, if the photos you’re getting are consistent in the change like mine have been. Profile pictures are really the best way to show to maxillary growth, but straight on shots are still very helpful.
your post is motivating. Especially considering your treatment is with posture and tongue correction. The changes you speak of just affirm that even the basic habit change has profound effect! I am glad.
hearing changes intrigue me. I get it, but it isn’t spoken of much around here.
isochronic beats/binaurals are my jammmmm. I used them more in the past, but when I was if spend hours on my program creating sessions. How are you applying them here? delta and theta may improve the process! Truly.
Lastly, if you feel the changes.. awesome. Motivation
Cant say I see the straight-on shots demonstrating the changes, yet I’ll be on the lookout. Aye aye.
And I'm still learning about binaural beats, and will admit I don't understand a lot about it. So far, it's been Quadible Integrity subliminals on Youtube and a few others focused on golden ratios and muscle relaxation, but if you have suggestions for others, please let me know. I get similar sensations as I do with ASMR, which is good enough on its own. Even if it is placebo, the way I look at it is that it's just another way I'm focusing on improving posture.
Hi Sclera, I would like to ask you about your hearing. You said you can now hear better, and that previously you had problems hearing, particularly when there was ambient noise. This describes my husband to a T. He has hearing problems which is worse with ambient noise. He has been to an ear specialist and has had tests done which confirmed that he has reduced hearing in one ear, but the specialist had no idea what is causing it and how it can be remedied.
He has perfect teeth, all 32 of them, with nary a filling. He has never had any orthodontic work done either. BUT he grinds his teeth violently when he is sleeping. It is so bad that sometimes I lie awake listening to it wondering if his teeth are going to break. I am wondering if there is a connection between his teeth grinding and his hearing loss. What do think has caused your hearing to improve? I am hoping that I am onto something here. Thank you for any light you can shed on this.
Hi @LizzyBennet! Sorry, I didn't get a notification you posted in this thread.
I can still have trouble with deciphering words with ambient noise, but I still stand by my statement that I can hear better than I did before working on my posture. I can pop my ears again through yawning, which I haven't been able to do in years. Also, I've been experiencing heat in my ears when eating spicy food. I finally get why cartoons show steam coming out of people's ears.
Before improving my oral posture, I clenched my teeth at night. So there might be something there with your husband. I rarely wake up clenching my teeth these days. It was one of the first improvements I experienced with better oral posture.
But personally, I feel like the changes in my ears are due to a few things. The new bite and tongue posture I have feels like it's affected my ear canal. The mandibular condyle is just anterior of the external auditorial meatus, so it makes sense that improvement of my TMJD and my clenching would affect the surrounding area. I wouldn't be surprised if the styloid process also has a relationship to hearing.
My improved body posture has significantly improved my alignment with my neck, and things feel more open, so I also feel like that might make a difference -- but maybe more in how earwax builds/is dealt with.
I hope that helps!
Thank you so much for your reply, Sclera. It has convinced me even more that my husband’s teeth grinding and his hearing problems are related. He has problems popping his ears too. Sometimes he says after a flight it takes weeks for his ears to pop!
There has been another clue. We dug out the old teeth guard he had had fitted (for his grinding) 10 or so years ago. He hadn’t used it for as long as he can remember because he can’t be bothered. When he tried to put it on, it wouldn’t fit. After comparing the shape of the teeth guard and the shape of his arch, and pinpointing where it hurt the most to put it on, I verified that his arch had got narrower and longer front to back. I then asked him where he put his tongue at rest and he told me he put it on the floor of his mouth, just behind his lower insisors. So, now things are piecing together. His beautiful teeth and perfect arch are in fact narrowing because of his incorrect tongue posture. His teeth are not crowded (no overlaps), they still fit together well, tightly, but the shape of his arches is elongating.
I told him about correct tongue posture but he thinks it’s all nonsense. He has never heard of anything like that before and says it feels unnatural to put his tongue on the roof of his mouth. Well, I did try to convince him, but if he won’t do it, there’s nothing more I can do. You can lead a horse to water, and all that. I hope that at some point he decides to give it a go because the hearing problems really bother him. He is currently looking for another ear specialist, but I told him I will not help him in his search because the fact that the previous ear specialist could not figure out the root cause of the problem suggests that it is not an issue with the ear per se, but something more holistic, and another ear doctor is not going to find anything different.
So, this is where we are right now. Maybe he will change his mind over time regarding tongue posture and its effects. Thanks again for telling me about your experience. It has helped a lot.
@lizzybennet -- I can't say what's going on with your Mr. Darcy, unfortunately, but I am sorry to hear he's resistant to oral posture. You're right, each person needs to make their own decision, and body and oral posture especially need to be corrected with full commitment and enthusiasm. I'm glad to see you here, though!
The only other thing I might throw out there is suggesting a consult with a myofunctional therapist -- I've found that that specific phrase tends to perk people's interest more than "tongue posture", "oral posture", or "mewing". The evidence suggesting improvement in TMJD, sleep apnea, and clenching is pretty compelling. I've even had a consultation with an orthodontist who was familiar with and enthusiastically supportive of myofunctional therapy.
But you've planted the seed! They sometimes have a way of growing on their own.