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My Routine  

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Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

In the new year, I've decided to get serious about this. I plan to keep a record of my methods and results on this thread and would appreciate anyone's feedback. For the sake of anonymity, I will remain relatively vague about identifying characteristics. I am in my mid-thirties. I always allowed my tongue to rest on the bottom of my mouth, and I've had issues with allergies that might have contributed to occasional mouth breathing. I had traditional orthodontics and wisdom teeth extractions as a teen. After my braces were removed, my teeth were straight, but I remember having insecurities about my canted smile even then. I've had some crowding post-braces, especially my lower incisors, and my lower molars seem to be tipping inward slightly. My upper central incisors are just slightly overlapped. In recent years, my occlusal cant and midline deviation seemed to get worse, and this asymmetry inspired my research into craniofacial dystrophy. I realized that my palate is relatively narrow and vaulted and it was initially difficult to keep my tongue seated on the roof of my mouth. The bridge of my nose veers left of my midline, while the tip is pulled right of center with my dental midline. My nostrils are also different sizes.

I've been making concerted efforts to improve my oral posture and swallowing habits for over a year. During that time, I did a couple rounds of self-ncr/nasal release, every day for a week or more. I regularly chew gum with some tongue smashing motions mixed in. I've also tried to be more cognizant of my body posture and sleeping position, but not reliably. I believe I have seen some improvement. I think my dental midline was initially about 4mm right of my interpupillary midline. This seems to be down to about 2mm off. I also think my occlusal cant might be improved by a degree or two, but is still pretty obvious. The bridge of my nose remains notably skewed to the left. It has gotten easier to keep my tongue on the roof of my mouth, but I'm not engaging the posterior 1/3 as much as I would like, and I don’t trust that I am consistent while sleeping. Increasing my tongue space would help catalyze the other changes I want. I have begun putting together an extra-oral anchorage appliance. I plan to wear a palate expander as consistently as possible, but probably not in public. I will connect the expander to a rig that will pull up and forward at night and while relaxing alone. I still have a few pieces left to assemble, but hope to begin this process in the next month or so. I also want to begin some exercises to improve my forward neck posture and anterior pelvic tilt. Please let me know if you have any suggestions!

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Posted : 06/01/2018 3:57 pm Gregory liked
Gregory
(@gjenopp)
Eminent Member

I appreciate your perspective; I appreciate your sharing.
There's plenty of this that is similar to my own situation. Plentyyy.
Even some of the things you mention...? The way I'm relating to you? The, the... canted smile you mention, for instance. I relate to that, and more.

Over the years, I would see a canted smile in the mirror and thought, "hm thats odd. I dont like that.  I dont like that at all! But I guess that's just a genetic flaw of mine! Guess I gotta just...accept it! Oh Well!"

And there's something about your sharing which makes me do a sort of exhale and say' wow...' you know, 'not alone' not alone.

No, I absolutely resonate with your experience, your perspective, and your newfound dedication to REALLY working on your routine.
I appreciat that; I appreciate your sharing.  (To repeat myself)

FHP and Anterior Pelvic Tilt. Kyphosis and Lordosis being under that umbrella. Main thing to do there is your stretches man.  Take it seriously.  Foam rolling.  Myofascial release. Get a massage therapist if you have to.  Get the tonic muscles to relax.  And get the phasic muscles to tighten up.  I'm still figuring this out myself, yet that is a framework to operate out of. 

Wish you the best with this all in the meantime. 

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Posted : 06/01/2018 4:44 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

While I would like to achieve more prominent cheekbones, and cheek hollows, improving my facial symmetry is most important to me. My occlusal cant, deviated dental midline, and crooked nose were the main features that inspired my search for nonsurgical techniques to improve the structure of my face. I just took more precise baseline measurements of the deviation in my nose and my teeth to be able to track changes. My interpupillary midline aligns almost exactly with the crease between my eyebrows when I furrow my forehead. I took a piece of dental floss and tried to extrapolate that line vertically down the middle of my face. The middle of the bridge of my nose looks to be about 4mm left of that line, while my dental midline looks to be about 2mm right of that line. The overall discrepancy of 6mm between the center of my nose and the center of my teeth is most obvious. My occlusal plain is also canted about 3 degrees higher on my left side. I mentioned in my last post, that I think these figures show improvement from what I remember before I changed my oral posture. I believe my dental midline used to be about 4mm off center (an improvement of 2mm), and my cant used to be about 4 degrees (an improvement of 1 degree). I didn't measure the deviation of my nose previously, but I think it looks to be about the same.

Thanks for commiserating with me Gregory! It is reassuring to know there are others out there with similar problems who are also trying to find solutions!

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Posted : 07/01/2018 6:53 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

 

The design for my extra-oral anchorage system is a hybrid of Plato's basic face pulling helmet ( http://jawpain-tmjtreatment.com/  ) and the MewVector ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dj1BGVsAhA ). Dr. Mew's more recent versions are stabilized by a neck brace rather than a head piece. I bought a neck brace and tried to make it work, but found there to be too much play between the fixation points and head motions, so I went back to a head-mounted strategy. My rig does incorporate 5 points of attachment like the Mew design (up in the front center, up in the back left, up in the back right, forward in the front left, and forward in the front right). Together, the resultant vector should distribute a protractive force across the maxilla better than Plato's standard face pulling setup with only two anterior vectors pulling up and forward. I just finished reinforcing the structure for the posterior anchorage points. I'm pleased with how it looks so far.

Planning my device around these two models brings up a few questions. To my understanding, Dr. Mew's philosophy suggests that I should maintain traction as consistently as possible, potentially throughout every night, and a few hours every day. Plato says I need only 30 minutes per day. Dr. Mew calibrates each of his elastics to about 200g of force. Plato is vague about how much force to use, but recommends starting with light tension and only increasing when you no longer see results. Dr. Mew uses orthodontic elastics connected to a facebow. Plato uses standard office supply rubber bands connected to paper clips.

So how do I reconcile these inconsistencies? I already have a facebow that I will interface with a palate expander. I plan to use orthodontic elastics stretched about 3x their small diameter rather than big rubber bands stretched to an anchorage on the top of my head, but I wasn't sure what size and strength elastics to order. I couldn't find any of the strength traditionally used for extra-oral applications, so I bought the strongest intra-oral elastics I could find. I also need to use these to hold the facebow and expander together. I'm unsure about what intensity and duration to use. I think I will start at a lower tension and less time than Dr. Mew recommends and then work my way up. Maybe about 100g on all 5 elastics for a couple hours every day/night to begin with, see how it feels, and increase from there. I intend to keep the palate expander in place for as many hours as possible (even when not connected to the extra-oral anchorage, potentially 12+ hours per day) and expand at a rate of 1mm per week as Dr. Mew recommends. Please let me know if you have any suggestions!

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Posted : 08/01/2018 10:50 pm
Gregory
(@gjenopp)
Eminent Member

Re-reading your two posts. 

Yup there’s similarities in our cases and mindset. To the point that, I’m - - - mmm, awed — no, motivated — by your progressing plan in building your own device. 

Shortly after I thought, “(facebow?)” and looked at prices and acquiring. I was curious! Couldn’t help it  

I don’t have answers on the numbers, nor design side of things. 

However, did wish to offer that my last dentist visit had the man telling me that orthodontics needed to be engaging the mouth >=22 hours a day for results. I hope I heard him wrong. Related: I liked that dentist — he was the first traditional dentist that was an advocate for tongue being on the roof of the mouth, yet didn’t seem familiar with orthotropics.

your device/expander likely will be more effective but I had that to offer. 

From an uneducated perspective, I agree on your decision to take it slowly with the force that these elastics will exude. 

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Posted : 09/01/2018 10:25 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

Thanks Gregory! When I say "facebow," I mean the the kind of wire attachment that interfaces with the headgear tubes on an expander, like the one Dr. Mew uses in the video I linked to. Google results for "facebow" might show a more substantial device used by prosthodontists to line up their prosthetics. It does seem hard to believe that facepulling for only 30 minutes per day could induce change as Plato claims. Maybe proper tongue posture between sessions helps prevent relapse?

I have installed a kind of metal tie plate with a grid of holes to provide options for where to anchor the posterior elastics. Now I am debating using a dremel tool to cut a channel connecting three of the holes so that a screw with a lock nut and a regular nut could be slid up and down that channel and tightened in place to precisely calibrate the desired tension.

 

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Posted : 10/01/2018 3:05 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

I felt like trying a self-ncr/nasal release session last night. It has been several months since the last round when I treated myself every day for about a week. During my previous round, I struggled during the first couple sessions to inflate past the turbinates, but I didn't have that issue this time. I was able to successfully advance into the nasopharynx through all six meatuses. I try to use the thumb squeezing strategy to suppress my gag reflex, but it wasn't as effective as I remember, and I didn't really get any sensations of shifting or release that I have sometimes achieved in the past. I did feel some pressure in my right eustachian tube while inflating through the left middle meatus, but that was about the extent of what I could feel. I might try again today or sometime soon to see if I can get better expansion.

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Posted : 11/01/2018 3:20 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

I cut the channels into the two metal tie plates on my protractive headgear so that the bolts I plan to use as my posterior anchorage points can be slid up and down freely to a desired position and then tightened down with nuts. I connected three holes in the tie plates creating a channel about 3cm long. I plan to tighten down the bolt at a position above and slightly forward from the hooks on the ends of my facebow, then measure the tension generated from an elastic stretched between those two points. If I want more or less tension, I will loosen the bolt, slide it up or down, tighten it, and then measure again. I wish that I had thought to do this before securing the tie plates in place because it was a little challenging to get the dremel tool into position to cut the plates, but I made it work, and smoothed off the edges with a file. I'll stop at the hardware store this evening to purchase the nuts and bolts I need.

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Posted : 13/01/2018 3:33 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

While I wait for the final pieces of my DIY device to arrive, I want to ask a question about palate expansion. Is there any way to avoid or minimize opening a gap between the central incisors? I am worried that this would be the most obvious telltale to family and friends that I am doing something with my mouth, which I would rather keep private. The accounts of using a palate expander I have read here and in the breakthematrix forum differ on this point. Some say that their front teeth separated about the same amount as they expanded the appliance while others say that they had minimal separation between their front teeth but much less than the total expansion of the appliance. How might we control this outcome or correct it after the fact? My upper central incisors are just slightly overlapped, so it would be good to space them out about a mm, but I'd like to avoid much more than that if possible.

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Posted : 21/01/2018 10:15 pm
TGW
 TGW
(@admin)
TGW Admin Admin

Speed of expansion is what is going to determine that gap. In every literature I have read, with a healthy amount of expansion this gap always closes within a few months. The gums end up pushing the teeth together, and if you have your wisdom teeth they will move forward and advance all of your teeth thus closing the gap.

So if you go very slowly the gap may never develop, the teeth re-aligning throughout the process. You can stop expansion when you notice a gap and wait for it to close. The gap is noted most in rapid and semi rapid expansion (upwards of 1mm per week). 

I've read through the rest of your topic, I want to discuss it in length but forgive that I can only post from my phone right now and it's a pain typing out long replies. 

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Posted : 22/01/2018 7:29 am
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member
Posted by: TGW

Speed of expansion is what is going to determine that gap. In every literature I have read, with a healthy amount of expansion this gap always closes within a few months. The gums end up pushing the teeth together, and if you have your wisdom teeth they will move forward and advance all of your teeth thus closing the gap.

So if you go very slowly the gap may never develop, the teeth re-aligning throughout the process. You can stop expansion when you notice a gap and wait for it to close. The gap is noted most in rapid and semi rapid expansion (upwards of 1mm per week). 

I've read through the rest of your topic, I want to discuss it in length but forgive that I can only post from my phone right now and it's a pain typing out long replies. 

Thanks TGW! So I want to go slow enough to minimize the gap between my central incisors but not so slow as to cause tipping of my molars rather than separation of the midpalatal stuture. I guess I will plan to follow the 1mm per week that Dr. Mew recommends, and then take a break as you suggest if the gap between my front teeth becomes noticeable. When you have time, I would definitely appreciate any thoughts about reconciling the differences between the approaches Dr. Mew and Plato take for their protractive headgear systems that I discussed in an earlier post in terms of short vs. long duration per day and fixed tension vs gradually increasing tension over the course of treatment.

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Posted : 22/01/2018 4:06 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member
 The notion that facial form relates not only to oral posture but more broadly to body posture, and other aspects of health appeals to me. However, with all of my other responsibilities, I don't have the time to be as comprehensive in my approach as I would like. Once I get my device assembled, I intend to use it consistently, to try and expand my palate and shift the maxilla up and forward directly, but I have written in this and other threads about complimentary strategies which I believe would enhance my progress. I wish I had the time for daily chewing and tongue exercises, self-ncr/nasal release treatments, and to prepare the most healthy, nutrient-dense foods. I will do my best to incorporate all of these to some extent but there are only so many hours in the day. I have also started to explore some stretching and body weight resistance exercises to improve my overall posture. To be honest, I will probably be very inconsistent with these until my work schedule becomes less intense, but I want to identify what I think might be useful for me and get anyone's feedback so that I can incorporate this into my routine as time permits. Gregory and I spoke in the first couple posts of this thread about strategies to improve my anterior pelvic tilt and forward head posture. 
 
Posted by: Gregory

FHP and Anterior Pelvic Tilt. Kyphosis and Lordosis being under that umbrella. Main thing to do there is your stretches man.  Take it seriously.  Foam rolling.  Myofascial release. Get a massage therapist if you have to.  Get the tonic muscles to relax.  And get the phasic muscles to tighten up.  I'm still figuring this out myself, yet that is a framework to operate out of. 

With this in mind, I think lunges, butterflys, malasana, child's pose, and pigeon stretches will help release my tight hip flexors and lower back. Planks will help strengthen my abs, and squats will help strengthen my glutes. Pullups will help strengthen my upper back and some chest stretches with my arms behind my back or against a doorway will help release my tight pecs. I will also try some myofascial release with a lacrosse ball. Further research might change my plans. Please let me know if you think I should add or remove any stretches or exercises from this list and why!

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Posted : 24/01/2018 6:43 pm
Allixa
(@allixa)
Estimable Member

Your story has some similarities to mine.

It sounds like you are trying some very interesting things in order to bring about changes. I'll be rooting for you and looking forward to some good updates in the future. I don't have much to add since I am still figuring things out myself but my plan is to expand first and let things go from there. I think that having a wide enough palate to mew properly will be a huge game changer and a huge catalyst for other changes over time. My situation may be different from yours though.

As far as midline deviation goes, I can relate even down to the act of using a piece of floss to see which parts are out of line. Mine has gotten slightly better from mewing as well but not completely fixed. Only recently have I realized that when I push my tongue up, it's actually going off to the wrong side a bit and that I have to consciously mew off to my left to actually be mewing straight up. Maybe that idea can help you as well.

One thing I have noticed that does make changes is face pulling with just my hands. It can create temporary shifts in the midline from what I have seen, but I never did it consistently enough to see if the changes could become permanent. I want to expand first before I try anything like that. But all that I did was insert both thumbs into my mouth palms up and grab and pull my teeth towards the direction I wanted them to go while using my fingers to push my nose bridge in the opposite direction. Sort of like unwinding the face. You can also use one of your thumbs to push right behind your front teeth for more traction.

I've experimented with facepulling using bands and devices in the past as well and while it does feel good I never got the idea from doing it that the changes would be permanent. Even plato's changes seem to mainly be a result of his orthodontic treatment/better occlusion and not his facepulling. But definitely give it a shot because I never did things systematically and rigorously, I just kind of winged it.

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Posted : 24/01/2018 11:33 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

I have gotten to the point where it is relatively comfortable for me to sleep on my back without a pillow, but I like to use a pillow when I turn on my side. Unfortunately, I often wake up to find that I have turned from my side to my back with the pillow still in place and the muscles along the back of my neck feel like they have been stretched too far. I was using a pillow about 7" thick in the past. I have now switched to a pillow I had in the closet that is about 5" thick. I am debating ordering a pillow that is just 2.5" thick. 

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Posted : 25/01/2018 8:56 pm
Progress
(@progress)
Member Moderator
Posted by: Apollo

 I have now switched to a pillow I had in the closet that is about 5" thick. I am debating ordering a pillow that is just 2.5" thick. 

Why not just fold a towel? Easy to wash, easy to shape to your needs. Convenience: the product.

In my case working out and stretching by itself were not necessary, or even beneficial to fixing my posture. I think focusing on specific repeated exercises/movements will at best awaken only some parts of what Gregory calls the phasic musculature. Movements like lunges or pull-ups are rarely performed with the absolute full range of motion & tension throughout the WHOLE fascia chain, but instead usually only to the point where the first muscle of the chain begins to resist. This is a huge problem, because no other than a full ROM full tension movement can affect the whole postural chain in a truly healing way. The functional imbalance itself may even be worsened, because the heavier the weight, the more prone you are to reverting back to the habitual asymmetrical movement during the lift, and you will not probably even realize it. 

What I have had the best results with is self-engineered/improvised combination of yoga posing & do-it-yourself chiropracticism where the spine is stretched, rotated and twisted to any maximum direction, and where the movement-related musculature is simultaneously tensed so systematically and thoroughly that the phasic muscles are forced to wake up, spasming as they return to your conscious control and awareness. An awakened muscle will automatically gain back some of its basic muscle tone, lessening the phasic / tonic ratio of the musculature.

For example, in one movement today I was was standing, pushing my feet outwards, pelvis forward, sucked stomach in, then tried to round my whole back while trying to lift my torso and shoulders as high as posssible. Meanwhile I made sure that any muscle I could become aware of was activating equally on its opposite side too. As the shoulders neared ears a lot of little cracks happened along the upper end of the spine. Sometimes even lower verbetrae have popped loudly during similar movements.

Combining whatever muscles you can think of that can be rotated and stretched out to any direction is a good way of inventing these movements.

 

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Posted : 25/01/2018 10:59 pm
Allixa
(@allixa)
Estimable Member

I second the recommendation to use a towel instead of a pillow. Pillows are mostly all too thick and too bouncy/springy. Using a towel or a folded sheet (what I use) gives the right amount of cushion with the right amount of firmness once you are settled in as well. Pillows always push back against you which never feels right. I use a sheet instead of a towel because my towels were all too firm for me.

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Posted : 26/01/2018 1:43 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

Thanks Progress and Allixa! I tried a towel before I switched to the lower-profile pillow, but it just felt too dense. On my back, it seemed to keep my head up too much and stretch my neck muscles even though it was shorter than the pillow because it didn't let my occiput sink in. On my side it felt like it was crushing my ear. Maybe I just needed a fluffier towel, but I am more comfortable using nothing. I wish I had the same level of awareness of my body as Progress describes. I just don't have the intuition to feel the activation of individual muscles or to determine what positions would help me correct imbalances between opposing muscle groups. I will try to be more mindful of this, but for now I have more trust in the logic of stretching the muscles I know I need to relax and exercising the muscles I know I need to strengthen.

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Posted : 26/01/2018 3:19 pm
Progress
(@progress)
Member Moderator

That is fine, not many modern human have a lot of innate awareness of the body. I certainly didn't. It's just easy to take it as granted now that I am so deep into the process. Perhaps it is unproductive on my behalf to make the self- sound easier than it is by not bothering to emphasize how great long-term dedication it has taken to reach this level of understanding of my anatomy. My aim has been to do so little in a week that it is sustainable, but just enough to make great leaps forward within the span of a year. That way, improving becomes more like a minor hobby than a major obsession. If you just commit to being aware of your body whenever you remember, that already will be of huge help in the long term. Eventually, you will inevitably start to notice "hey.. this does not feel right" during common daily movements, or that the weight of your clothes feels unevenly distributed along certain parts of your body.

 

However, you also say that you "have more trust in the logic of stretching the muscles I know I need to relax and exercising the muscles I know I need to strengthen."

 

How will you succeed in this with insufficient bodily awareness? Whether you do it my way, or your way, there is no way around having to develop a better sense of the physical body

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Posted : 26/01/2018 3:51 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member
Posted by: Progress

However, you also say that you "have more trust in the logic of stretching the muscles I know I need to relax and exercising the muscles I know I need to strengthen."

 

How will you succeed in this with insufficient bodily awareness? Whether you do it my way, or your way, there is no way around having to develop a better sense of the physical body

 Right, I was agreeing with you. I said "I will try to be more mindful of this, but for now I have more trust in the logic of stretching the muscles I know I need to relax and exercising the muscles I know I need to strengthen." In other words, I will have to lean on logical inferences in the interim while I am developing better body intuition. It seems to me I will only improve awareness of my body by using it in movements that I reason will help and reflecting on how they feel and if my posture improves.

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Posted : 26/01/2018 4:24 pm
Melanie
 Melanie
(@Melanie)
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Something that has helped with both my body awareness and my posture is the Feldenkrais method (a kind of yoga). I'd recommend it alongside any other postural exercises

There's some stuff on youtube, I like feldenkraiswithalfons

Hope this is helpful 🙂

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Posted : 26/01/2018 4:56 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member
Posted by: Melanie

Something that has helped with both my body awareness and my posture is the Feldenkrais method (a kind of yoga). I'd recommend it alongside any other postural exercises

There's some stuff on youtube, I like feldenkraiswithalfons

Hope this is helpful 🙂

Thanks @Melanie, I wasn't familiar with the Feldenkrais method but I'm intrigued after watching a couple of Alfons's youtube videos. @Progress, are you familiar with this "method of somatic education?" It seems like something you would appreciate!

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Posted : 27/01/2018 3:26 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

It will probably be at least another month before I have all of the components of my device assembled, but I'm making progress! I was able to take a more accurate measurement of my intermolar width and confirmed that it is currently about 34mm. For the past few days I have been doing the exercises/stretches I mentioned very informally whenever I find a few moments of downtime. On the recommendation of @Melanie, I have also completed the first three videos in the "Getting Better Day by Day" introductory series on the "Feldenkrais with Alfons" youtube channel. This methodology has nothing to do with stretching or strengthening muscles but only improving the fluidity of their motions and awareness about how they function. I don't know if it has done anything for me, but Alfons is charming, and the lessons do compel you to slow down and think about how your body organizes basic movements.

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Posted : 30/01/2018 4:38 pm
Mewssolini
(@mewssolini)
New Member

Hill sprints are really good for glute ACTIVATION, I wasn't allowed to lift weights back then so that was my go to exercise (did it every other day), so even though I sat around the computer a lot I never developed anterior pelvic tilt. 

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Posted : 30/01/2018 6:14 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

Almost all of the components for my DIY extra-oral protraction headgear have arrived or are on the way, but the inexpensive orthodontic elastics I ordered from a Chinese vendor a long time ago never came. I think I will place a new order from a local vendor even though they are significantly marked up. I don't want to be waiting on rubber bands with everything else ready. I should be able to start within a couple weeks. Unfortunately, the timing of this is not ideal. My work responsibilities will be intense for the next several months. I am a little worried that any pain or distraction from the process might disrupt my sleep and productivity. In addition to overnight use, I am also considering if it will be feasible to use the expander and/or headgear while working at home alone in the evenings. It looks like my schedule won't allow me to be as holistic in my approach as I would like without time for much in the way of stretching, exercises, diet, self-ncr, etc. Maybe I can begin to add on those strategies in a few months when my workload becomes more manageable. I am still trying to settle on an exact plan. TGW's (@admin) recent progress report says that he only wore his expander about every other night and only turned the screw when the expander felt loose. I think I want to be a little more aggressive, at least initially. I plan to wear my expander every night and maybe a few hours during the day. I guess I will start with the 1mm per week of expansion recommended by Dr. Mew. I am less sure about the extra-oral protraction. Plato and @fpquestion report results from facepulling for very short sessions (in the neighborhood of 20-30 minutes). I guess I will start with a couple short sessions and see how they feel, but I am disposed to try and maintain the traction for many hours as Dr. Mew prescribes with his MewVector headgear. Maybe the difference is what tension they use. For now I plan to apply about 200grams of tension on each of my 5 elastics.

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Posted : 14/02/2018 3:22 pm
Yay
 Yay
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Any chance of getting instructions or DIY version of this for more to try? 

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Posted : 20/02/2018 5:04 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member
Posted by: Yay

Any chance of getting instructions or DIY version of this for more to try? 

I've tried to describe my design in this thread as I've put the rig together. It is basically just Plato's facepulling helmet (instructions on how to make can be found here http://jawpain-tmjtreatment.com/ ) modified to be compatible with the five MewVector-style attachment points (  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dj1BGVsAhA ) with a facebow connected to the headgear tubes on a palate expander. I am still waiting on a couple pieces to finish building and test it. I'll report back and write up a summary if I can get it to work.

Posted by: Apollo
 

The design for my extra-oral anchorage system is a hybrid of Plato's basic face pulling helmet ( http://jawpain-tmjtreatment.com/  ) and the MewVector ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dj1BGVsAhA ). Dr. Mew's more recent versions are stabilized by a neck brace rather than a head piece. I bought a neck brace and tried to make it work, but found there to be too much play between the fixation points and head motions, so I went back to a head-mounted strategy. My rig does incorporate 5 points of attachment like the Mew design (up in the front center, up in the back left, up in the back right, forward in the front left, and forward in the front right). Together, the resultant vector should distribute a protractive force across the maxilla better than Plato's standard face pulling setup with only two anterior vectors pulling up and forward. I just finished reinforcing the structure for the posterior anchorage points. I'm pleased with how it looks so far.

Posted by: Apollo
I cut the channels into the two metal tie plates on my protractive headgear so that the bolts I plan to use as my posterior anchorage points can be slid up and down freely to a desired position and then tightened down with nuts. I connected three holes in the tie plates creating a channel about 3cm long. I plan to tighten down the bolt at a position above and slightly forward from the hooks on the ends of my facebow, then measure the tension generated from an elastic stretched between those two points. If I want more or less tension, I will loosen the bolt, slide it up or down, tighten it, and then measure again. I wish that I had thought to do this before securing the tie plates in place because it was a little challenging to get the dremel tool into position to cut the plates, but I made it work, and smoothed off the edges with a file. I'll stop at the hardware store this evening to purchase the nuts and bolts I need.

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Posted : 20/02/2018 8:47 pm
Yay
 Yay
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Thank you, I think I’d you get it tweaked and post a picture of the device I can make one too, my husband is super crafty and good with things (I’m super visual and struggle with stuff unless there’s an object to link the description with something). 

I’d be very cool if both of us and others try this together (expanders and headgear) - I’m willing to also record and document with video and with any results post them too 🙂 think my breaking point was seeing this when putting my head back after one year of oral posture and wanting to change much sooner:  https://imgur.com/a/Vk5ZI

Theres been improvements... but headgear or something is needed and I’d it can help me imagine what I can do for others with less severe cases! 

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Posted : 20/02/2018 9:50 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
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Posted by: Yay

Thank you, I think I’d you get it tweaked and post a picture of the device I can make one too, my husband is super crafty and good with things (I’m super visual and struggle with stuff unless there’s an object to link the description with something). 

I don't think I've invented anything groundbreaking. It's really just a helmet that I have added five attachments points to in the positions of the MewVector systems so that I can use a facebow with small orthodontic elastics rather than the long rubber bands attached to the top of the helmet that Plato uses. You might be able to come up with a better design than I did. Mew has several detailed videos about making his MewVector systems on youtube. Maybe you could figure out how to use a neck brace like his newer designs. I like the idea that the reciprocal force isn't pressing on any of your other cranial bones when it is pulling on the maxilla, but I couldn't achieve enough stability between my head and the attachment points. So I went back to basics and decided to use a helmet like Plato. I'm not saying I won't post pictures, but I have a couple reservations. The first is that I am much more inhibited than you are about posting anything identifiable, but I suppose pictures of just the device without me wearing it are anonymous enough. My second reservation is that this is a potentially dangerous apparatus. I don't want to be responsible for people hurting themselves or causing their condition to deteriorate. I'm comfortable directing others to the instructions I combined to make my design which are already out there, but I'm a little uneasy about putting mine forward as a prototype, especially when I see it as a compromise of my original vision, and I haven't tested how it impacts me. So I'll have to think about it. Maybe once I have tried it out and start to get a sense if it is working I'll feel better about sharing images.

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Posted : 20/02/2018 11:06 pm
Apollo
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I need to decide how fast I want to expand. TGW's (@admin) recent progress report says that he only turned the screw when his expander felt loose, and other users have commented that this might be the best way to determine the rate of expansion. Unlike TGW, my expander was already pretty snug in my mouth when it arrived. In fact, I'm a little worried that it feels like the wires are keeping the acrylic from sitting totally flush with my palate (fractions of a millimeter). In other words, when I push up on the expander with my tongue or my fingers or my bottom teeth, I feel it in the wires against the upper teeth rather than the acrylic against the palate. I haven't started wearing it consistently yet. When I take it out, it feels like the pressure pushing up on the wires will cause some shifting in my upper teeth to allow the wires to fit better between the teeth. At first, I wondered if I should bend the wires down just slightly, but I think what I'm going to do is wear the expander every night for at least a week without turning the screw and I think it should become more secure. But this brings me back to the question of how fast to expand. I think once the expander feels flush against my palate, I will try to adhere to Dr. Mew's 1mm per week schedule. If each turn of the palate expander screw equals about 1/4mm, then I should be turning the screw about 4 turns per week. I've read conflicting advice about if it is better to do these turns gradually or all at once. I think I'm inclined to go the gradual route and turn about once every-other day.

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Posted : 23/02/2018 4:20 pm
Apollo
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I wore my expander through the night for the first time last night. I haven't turned the screw yet because it felt like the wires between the teeth were keeping the acrylic from sitting totally flush against my palate when I initially tried it on for a couple minutes at a time. By this morning, I could feel much more contact of the acrylic on my palate including the split down the middle, which I couldn't feel at first. When I took out the expander, my teeth felt like they had shifted a little. So I'm happy that it seems to be fitting better. I am going to continue wearing it for at least a couple more nights without turning the screw. I'm still waiting on one last piece for my headgear. I have to decide if I want to start both processes simultaneously, or maybe expand for about a week before adding on the extra-oral traction. I am also considering a couple modifications to my expander. We discussed in this thread (  https://the-great-work.org/community/main-forum/you-can-easily-shave-down-a-palate-expander-to-refit-it-to-your-mouth/ ) about how to adjust the labial bow so that it doesn't pull back on your front teeth as you separate the sides. My expander's labial bow is already almost touching my central incisors, so I want to be able to bend it out once I start expanding. I am going to order some inexpensive bird-beak orthodontic pliers which should do the job. I have a basic expander, not the y-plate design. TGW removed everything from the canines forward on his expander and said "I removed the front acrylic because I think it was preventing my front arc from expanding like it wanted to." I'm curious to hear more about this decision. I have some minor crowding in my upper central incisors, so I want to separate those front teeth by about a mm. After that I might smooth off the ridges at the front of my expander to better allow the teeth to shift back to together and minimize development of a midline diastema, but I think I want to keep the acrylic in the front to spread out the force of the extra oral traction across my palate. I have also debated if there is a way to add a wire to the labial bow that would encourage the four front teeth to stay together once I expand enough to resolve the crowding. I'm glad to finally get things rolling, and I'll update here with any progress.

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Posted : 24/02/2018 12:01 pm
Kendo
 Kendo
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May I know where did u get ur exapnder from? I live in thailand and i dont think there are any

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Posted : 25/02/2018 6:14 am
Apollo
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Posted by: Kendo

May I know where did u get ur exapnder from? I live in thailand and i dont think there are any

https://the-great-work.org/community/main-forum/buying-a-dental-appliance-straight-from-a-lab/#post-432

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Posted : 25/02/2018 10:51 am
Apollo
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I wore my expander for a few hours during the day yesterday and throughout the night again. When I first put it in my mouth it still doesn't sit as flush against my palate as it does after wearing it for a while. I suppose that's what it might feel like when I start turning the screw. I made a case to hold my expander, facebow, and elastics. The facebow won't fit inside a typical retainer case, so I bought a small plastic case for photographs and drilled a few holes in the bottom to allow air circulation for moisture to evaporate. The facebow interfaces nicely with the headgear tubes on my expander. When I put the expander in my mouth with the facebow attached, it sits at the same angle as my occlusal cant. If I set the posterior attachement points at the same level on both sides of the helmet the one on the left will be several millimeters closer to the facebow than the one on the right, meaning I would get more tension on the right side. 

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Posted : 25/02/2018 11:07 am
Apollo
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I just tried on my DIY headgear connected to my expander for the first time and it feels great! The traction is strong enough to know its doing something but light enough to not cause pain or be distracting. However, I still have one design flaw I'm trying to work out. I knew the orthodontic elastics are small enough that I can't stretch them directly from the expander/facebow to the metal facemask on my helmet for the three anterior attachment points. So I need something flexible to bring the attachment point from the facemask closer to my mouth but moves aside when I am taking the helmet on and off. I also want to be able to adjust the attachment point to increase or decrease the tension. Originally, I ordered some extra wide zipties that I was going to secure to the facemask, cut down to a couple inches in length, and then cut a slit down the middle where a nut and bolts could be tightened down on the plastic, to secure, or loosened to adjust. This was the final item I was waiting to arrive. Unfortunately, the zipties are too rigid and won't tighten all the way down onto the narrow metal of the facemask. So instead, I had some velcro cable ties lying around. I could get these to tighten onto the facemask, and I could attach the nuts and bolts to them, but the hardware just comes loose from the channel if you try to adjust its position. So I'll have to revise my plan. There are plenty of ways I could make this functional, but I also want to make it tidy and simple to use.

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Posted : 25/02/2018 3:23 pm
Apollo
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I'm still planning to wait another couple days before beginning to turn the screw, but I wore my expander again last night. I ordered some bird beak pliers to be able to adjust the labial bow. Since the labial bow is already touching my central incisors, I want to be able to bend it out once I start expanding. When I floss, I can feel that the teeth that the expander's wires go between have separated a little and I think this is what is allowing the acrylic to sit flush with my palate. Once my pliers arrive, I will start expanding. Last week I took some "before" pictures, but Mew's new video about taking interoral images, and his tip about using the flash was helpful, so I took a few more pictures yesterday.

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Posted : 26/02/2018 12:51 pm
Allixa
(@allixa)
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Glad to hear that your expander came in. I don't have anything to contribute yet but I am keeping up with your progress and wish you luck.

Mine should come in soon and if I notice anything that I think might help you or might be good to know I will chime in.

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Posted : 27/02/2018 1:53 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
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Taking my baseline interoral photos with lip retractors in place helped me better understand aspects of my asymmetry that I had just started to suspect from looking in the mirror. When I took measurements more than a month ago, my dental midline was about 2mm right of my interpupillary midline, but the middle of the bridge of my nose was about 4mm left of my interpupillary midline. Looking in the photos, it's clear that a significant part of the dental deviation is because of my occlusal cant. In other words, if I was able to straighten out my occlusal plane so that the line between my central incisors was parallel to my interpupillary midline, the deviation would probably be 1mm or less. It's just that the right side of my mouth being lower than the left tilts the top of my central incisors farther to the right. Another revelation that I had suspected but looks more obvious in the images is that my maxilla appears to be slightly more recessed on the right side. I think these tilts might be the reason that my right side seems to be more of a V shape straight back as compared to the curving U of my left side. My expander looks pretty symmetrical. So my right side seems to be both lower and farther back than the left, and if there's any way to correct these tilts, it should correct my dental midline deviation.

This makes me debate again if I should pull harder up and forward with my DIY headgear elastics on the right than on the left. I'm not really sure how the observation that the left side of my maxilla seems to be "better developed" relates to the bridge of my nose deviating to the left. The right frontal process of my maxilla is significantly closer to my interpupillary midline than the left frontal process. This seems counterintuitive to me because it is as though the top of my maxilla is angled in the opposite direction from the bottom of the maxilla (see image). My nasal bone also seems to be shifted to the left of center.

 

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Posted : 27/02/2018 7:08 pm
Apollo
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The bird beak pliers I ordered arrived today and I used them to loosen the labial bow on my expander.

It was pretty easy to bend it out and re-level it, but I might have adjusted the wire out a little too far. Originally it was touching my right central incisor that slightly overlaps the left. Now there is about a 2-3mm separation between the labial bow and my teeth. I don't own the three-prong pliers in the image above recommended for closing the adjustment loop, but I could probably bend the wire back in by flipping the bird beak pliers with the round side on the inside of the loop. Since the labial bow will become tighter as I open the expansion screw, I think I will leave it where it is.

My expander seems to be fitting flush against my palate after using it for 6 days, so I plan to turn the screw for the first time tonight (Thursday). For now I am going to try to stick to Mew's recommended 1mm per week by turning the screw on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings (about 1/4mm per turn). I want to turn the screw in the evenings rather than before the few hours I wear the expander during the day, so that the expander has the entire overnight period to take effect. I still need to work out the anterior attachment points on my headgear before I can add the extra-oral traction to my routine.

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Posted : 01/03/2018 3:48 pm
Apollo
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Posted by: Allixa

Nice find.

Here's the powerpoint presentation to go along with it, lots of cool images and info in here:

https://www.aaoinfo.org/system/files/media/documents/Handleman%20--%20Point%3B%20The%20Case%20for%20Nonsurgical%20Expansion.pdf

The presentation posted by Allixa of the article posted by MewingWorks has a recommended expansion protocol. They are using a fixed Haas expander rather than the removable appliance I am using, so I'm not sure how much of this is applicable, but they recommend turning the screw no faster than every other day, and every 3rd to 5th day for patients over 30 to avoid pain and tissue swelling.

I am in my mid 30s, so this protocol would suggest that I should expand slower than Mew's 1mm/week recommendation. I was planning to turn every Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday, with consecutive days on the weekends to keep to 1mm/week. Based on this information, I think I will switch to every other day rather than consistent calendar days, and slow down further if I experience pain or tissue swelling as the presentation describes. Dr. Mew suggests that the disadvantage of going slower is causing more dental tipping rather than skeletal separation, but given my age, maybe I should consider turning the screw once every 3 days rather than every 2. Going slower than every other day would also increase the chance of forgetting how many days ago I turned the screw.

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Posted : 01/03/2018 4:48 pm
Apollo
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I turned the screw on my expander for the first time last night. I think the first turn was probably a little less than 1/4mm because the key hole started in the middle and I turned it to the edge. For future turns, the hole starts at one side and will turn to the other. Still, I can definitely feel some expansion. I'm currently planning to turn the screw every other day. I think I'll post here every time I turn just to help me keep track of the days and to make notes about what I am feeling, so forgive me if the thread becomes even more cluttered.

I have decided to use the velcro cable ties for the three anterior attachment points on my headgear, but I will sew maybe 3-5 hooks from hook-and-eye closures onto each of the straps to allow me to adjust the tension by stretching to a farther or closer hook. I tried the headgear on again last night and slept for a few hours with it on. The stretch feels good, but the pressure of the padding against whatever side of my head is toward the bed becomes uncomfortable, so I kept waking up and turning over, and ultimately took it off. It's a challenge to unhook all of the little orthodontic elastics when I'm half asleep.

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Posted : 02/03/2018 12:48 pm
Apollo
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I've written in the past about the differences in tension and duration of sessions between Dr. Mew's MewVector headgear and Plato's facepulling helmet. While Dr. Mew seems to suggest that patients should maximize the number of hours under traction, Plato says one 30 min session per day is enough to see changes. I think the difference must be the tension applied. Dr. Mew calibrates his 5 elastics to about 200 grams of tension each. Three of his elastics pull approximately upward and two of his elastics pull approximately forward so if we simplify and say this is a total force of 600 grams up and 400 grams forward, the pythagorean theorem tells us that the resultant vector is approximately 720 grams of force. For reference, this is about 1.6 pounds. While this might seem insignificant, I can definitely feel the strain after using similar traction for a couple 1 to 3 hour sessions so far. My setup might be applying slightly more tension but roughly the same as the MewVector. Let's round up and say I'm totalling around 2 pounds of force. I think people who are facepulling with a belt or towel, and using leverage or body weight, must be applying significantly more force. Plato is vague about the amount of tension he generates with his rubber bands, but he insists that he started with light "biologically compatible" force and only increased the tension when results plateaued.

After using my headgear again last night, it is becoming clear that I won't be able to sleep through the night with it on as I had originally considered. It is the discomfort of the helmet padding's pressure against my head, and the irritation of the upward anterior elastic's pressure into my lip that are limiting the duration of my sessions rather than the dull strain of the expander pulled up against my palate. So realistically, I think I'll probably only be able to wear the headgear for a few hours each day. This makes me wonder if I should try to compensate by increasing the tension, but for now I'm going to continue with light forces and try to fit in as many hours as I can.

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Posted : 03/03/2018 3:18 pm
Apollo
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I turned my expander screw for the second time last night. I'm going to keep a running tally of my expansion at the bottom of these posts. This turn felt more intense than the first turn. I felt it most in the area of my molars and maybe the alveolar ridge above them, but not in the middle of my palate. I guess that is normal. I also did a session of about 2 hours in my headgear. One of the questions I submitted for the next Mew Q/A asked if shifting the maxilla up would cause more of my upper incisors to be covered by my upper lip when I smile, since I don't have any gingival exposure in the front already. I have been thinking about my post on the Curve of Spee (  https://the-great-work.org/community/main-forum/elements-of-smile-aesthetics-and-craniofacial-dystrophy/#post-784 ) and FPQuestion's post about a downward component to extra-oral traction ( https://the-great-work.org/community/main-forum/facepulling-downwards-direction-seems-like-what-all-the-professionals-use/#post-707 ). At the time I dismissed even a slight downward angle out of hand, but TGW commented that this might be a part of forward advancement in some people. Since I have gingival exposure in the back but not the front, and a cant that gives me more gingival exposure on the right side, I am thinking about removing the central anterior upward elastic from my headgear. This is also the elastic that presses into my upper lip and causes pain that can limit the duration of my sessions. This would leave me with an elastic pulling up in the posterior on both sides and an elastic pulling forward in the anterior on both sides. I might also consider angling my right side anterior elastic up slightly to help correct the cant. 

Expansion total: 1/2mm

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Posted : 04/03/2018 12:50 pm
Apollo
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I've been wearing my expander for about 8 hours while sleeping every night and maybe about another 4 hours while awake. It still feels pretty tight on the second day after my second turn of the screw. I think I am going to delay turning the screw again until at least tomorrow evening. It might be that I should change from my plan to turn roughly every 2 days (close to Dr. Mew's recommended 1mm/week), to a 3-5 day schedule as recommended by the protocol for patients over age 30 that I mentioned in an earlier post. I'll also try to get in a few more hours of daytime use.

Last night I wore my headgear for a couple hours without the central anterior elastic pulling up. I mentioned in my last post my theory that I mostly need to bring my maxilla forward, and I might not need to lift the maxilla up in the front where I have no gingival exposure, but do need to lift my maxilla up in the back where I have some gingival exposure. This central elastic was also uncomfortably pressing into my upper lip. So I only used the two posterior elastics pulling up and the two anterior elastics pulling forward last night. It seemed to work better. It occurred to me after I was already strapped in that I could change the angle of the central elastic to pull forward instead of upward. This would give me three elastics pulling forward in the front and two elastics pulling up in the back. I'll try that tonight.

In my thread about using vibration to try and enhance shifting along the cranial sutures ( https://the-great-work.org/community/main-forum/extracorporeal-shock-wave-therapy/ ), I mentioned that low intensity pulsed ultrasound devices like acceledent vibrate at a lower frequency (around 30Hz) as compared to electric toothbrushes (250-300Hz) and handheld massagers (100+Hz). I get the impression that lower frequencies might be more effective, but I've been using a handheld massager against my face while wearing my expander. I feel like it might be helping. I might be imagining, but it feels like the expander is not as tight in my mouth after holding the massager at different locations on my maxilla and along my maxillary suture lines for 10-20 minute session. I could also hear some cracking/popping in my right ear toward the end of my last vibration treatment.

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Posted : 05/03/2018 3:20 pm
Apollo
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Sometimes I catch myself snoring or wake up with a bad taste in my mouth, so I suspected that I occasionally mouth breath in my sleep. I tried mouth taping for the first time last night. I used 3M micropore tape place horizontally across all of my mouth. I think it made a significant difference. I woke up about an hour before my alarm and felt better rested. I definitely want to continue experimenting with this. It hurt my lips a little pulling it off, so I might put some chapstick on my lips before applying the tape tonight.

I have still only turned my expander screw twice for a total of about 1/2mm, but already my upper central incisors look less crowded. I had only a very minor overlap and this has almost completely resolved. My lower incisors are more crowded and will probably require at least 2mm of expansion before they start to straighten out. I am glad that my upper incisors have aligned, but I hope they don't continue to separate and develop a gap. I'm planning to try to turn my screw again this evening before putting on my expander and taping my mouth for the night.

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Posted : 06/03/2018 12:40 pm
Allixa
(@allixa)
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Hey @apollo,

How long did it take for your expander to arrive after getting the email from them that it was shipped?

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Posted : 06/03/2018 8:01 pm
Apollo
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@allixa, it took a couple weeks to reach me here in the States (about the same amount of time for the impression kit to arrive after I got the notice it shipped). 

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Posted : 06/03/2018 8:06 pm
Allixa
(@allixa)
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Alright, guess I need to be patient then. Thanks for letting me know the potential timeframe.

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Posted : 07/03/2018 11:28 am
Apollo
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I turned my expander screw again last night, for a total of 3 turns and 3/4mm of expansion. I waited 3 days between turns. Such a small distance feels surprisingly significant inside my mouth. This turn gave me more of a stretching sensation in the center of my palate than I had after the previous turns, so I guess that is a good sign. Over the past few days, I developed some minor irritation on the roof of my mouth were a small section of my oral mucosa was being pressed into the groove where the key goes to turn the screw. I decided to use a nail file to round off the edges of the acrylic where the sides of the expander separate. This feels a little less annoying to my palate and tongue. The slight overlap of my upper central incisors is gone. After my next turn of the screw I think I will smooth off the indentations in the acrylic between my front six teeth to allow more freedom to realign and hopefully minimize the development of a midline diastema. Soon I will probably also need to file off some acrylic around my torus palatinus. I used my handheld massager around my maxilla after turning the screw and again heard some cracks/pops in my right ear but not my left ear (even though I pressed the massager in the same locations on both sides of my face). I think this is really encouraging since my right side seems to be farther down and back. I taped my mouth again last night. I woke up about an hour earlier than my alarm again this morning and felt well-rested. I was more careful removing the tape this morning, and I think putting chapstick on the night before helped protect my lips. It's still a little early to cast a verdict on the efficacy of mouth taping, but so far I am really happy with the results.

Total Expansion: 3/4mm

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Posted : 07/03/2018 4:13 pm
Apollo
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For anyone following along, I wanted to note that I haven't been logging everything I do each day. In addition to 12+ hours wearing my expander, including 1-3 hours connected to my DIY extra-oral traction, I also try to chew gum 1-2 hours each day. Other elements of the routine include using the handheld massager, and mouth taping during sleep. I wish I had more time to work on my body posture and add in some self-ncr. Today is the second day since turning the screw, and the expander still feels pretty tight. My current plan is to turn again tomorrow, but I will see how it feels. Sorting through some childhood items, I came across the before-and-after intraoral photos from my adolescent orthodontics. The teeth certainly look straighter in the after, but my canted occlusal plane is unchanged from the before shot.

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Posted : 08/03/2018 3:31 pm
Apollo
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I found my old retainer from my adolescent orthodontics among some of my childhood items in storage. I measured the intermolar width on the retainer and it is approximately 37mm. So my intermolar width decreased by about 3mm after I stopped using my retainer, maybe sometime around age 18. So far, I have expanded by 3/4mm and I'm planning to turn the screw again this evening to bring my current intermolar width up to about 35mm, still about 2mm below where I was after my braces. I mentioned in yesterday's post that I found the before and after pictures from my orthodontics and that I had a consistent occlusal cant in both the before and after pictures. This suggests to me that expanding back to 37mm alone won't improve my cant, but hopefully once I get enough tongue space, my mewing and extra-oral traction might make a difference.

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Posted : 09/03/2018 4:08 pm
Progress
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Had you noted your face getting worse during the time you suspect the regression happened?

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Posted : 09/03/2018 4:35 pm
Apollo
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Posted by: Progress

Had you noted your face getting worse during the time you suspect the regression happened?

That's a change of 3mm over the course of almost 15 years, so any facial changes weren't dramatic. I think you could say that my cheekbones became slightly flatter, my undereye circles became darker, and the bridge of my nose became more asymmetric. Mostly I noticed the difference in my occlusion, biting my cheeks when chewing, increasing dental crowding, dental midline deviation etc.

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Posted : 09/03/2018 4:53 pm
Allixa
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Do you mind linking to the type of device you are using to vibrate your sutures? It sounds like it is working well and actually helping.

Also @progress, there was a period in my life where my palate became more narrow and my teeth fell down a bit due to an open mouth posture, and I definitely did notice some worsening in my face at that time. However since I started mewing I gained everything back and then some in terms of aesthetics, but the palate itself did not change back to where it was or get any wider than when I started.

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Posted : 09/03/2018 7:24 pm
Apollo
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Posted by: Allixa

Do you mind linking to the type of device you are using to vibrate your sutures? It sounds like it is working well and actually helping.

Like I said, the research I read suggests that a lower frequency vibration might be better, but this is the kind of handheld massager I am using because I already owned it:

 

I could be imagining, but it seems to make the expander feel slightly less tight if I hold it against my maxilla and along the sutures while wearing my expander for 10-20 minutes. Occasionally I have heard a cracking/popping sound in my right ear, especially during sessions soon after I have turned the screw. That being said, my expansion has progressed slower than the 1mm per week rate Dr. Mew recommends, so it's not like this is working wonders.

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Posted : 09/03/2018 7:50 pm
Allixa
(@allixa)
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Yeah, I don't expect it to work magic or anything, but the fact that it creates popping noises points to it helping at least somewhat, which is amazing considering that most people don't even believe that adults can get expansion. And for how fast you are expanding, I am pretty sure Mew got his guidelines from the same study we found earlier, so for a patient of your age he would probably recommend the more gradual rate. As long as you are making progress and aren't tipping too much then the rate shouldn't be too important.

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Posted : 09/03/2018 8:01 pm Apollo liked
Apollo
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I turned my expander screw for the fourth time yesterday to complete my first 1mm of expansion in 12 days. I mentioned previously how a small section on the roof of my mouth was getting pressed into the key channel. Now that the sides of the expander have separated, a line of mucosa all along that gap is similarly irritated. I think it is from suction created by my tongue pressing up on the expander causing swelling in the tissue not covered by the expander. It's not that much of a nuisance, but it is a little difficult to distinguish if the discomfort I am feeling on my palate is from the inflamed epithelium or from separation of the midpalatal suture. I think the suction causing the irritation won't be as intense once there is a wider gap between the two sides of the expander.

Total Expansion: 1mm

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Posted : 10/03/2018 4:17 pm
Johan
 Johan
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Hi, 

I've been mewing for 3 months now. My mewing consists of maintaining the proper tongue posture and about two weeks ago I started doing some chin tuck series that dr. Mew showed in the video. I can't say that I see big changes like some people say in comments on youtube. What can I add to this routine? I started chewing gums regularly, but I saw that while I chew gums I 'forget' my tongue posture and I'm not expanding my palate, too. 

The second question is about the posterior third.  All people and Mike himself say that I should feel uncomfortable if I really get the posterior up.  I myself don't feel any discomfort. I can only feel discomfort when I do a big swallow when my tongue blocks my airway, but I can't stay in that position because I cannot breathe. 

Third question: How do you measure your intermolar with at home because Mike showed a method that includes a dentists appliance. I tried by putting some toothpaste on the ends of my molars and bitting a paper so it leaves on the paper. Is that good method?

And the last one. How much will it take to see some improvement? By 'some' I mean an improvement that other people can see and not only I because those changes are really subjective. 

I think I have a potential for improvement because I'm immature and have still some time to grow.

Please let me know how I can improve my routine because I feel I'm just losing time if I'm doing this wrong.

Thanks.

 

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10/03/2018 5:47 pm
Apollo
(@apollo)
Reputable Member

Hi Johan, I'll try to answer your questions, but I think your last question is most important: it generally takes many months to achieve even subtle changes that you might not notice without standardized before-and-after photographs. If you are still growing, your results might be faster. I could discern only subtle improvements from over a year of concerted effort to maintain correct oral posture. With my intermolar width around 34mm, I decided that I needed an expander to gain the necessary tongue space to make better progress. So what can you add to your routine? You didn't mention swallowing technique. Have you been practicing the push swallow? I think that the position of the posterior tongue against your soft palate that obstructs your airway during a swallow is the ideal position for mewing, but is impossible because it obstructs breathing, so sometimes I swallow to put my tongue in that position and then gradually back off the tongue and feel its resistance against gas exchange between my lungs and nose. Then I back off just a little more until I'm able to breathe freely, but can still feel the soft palate against the back of my tongue. It's still hard to maintain that posture for long, but that's what I try to do. In addition to the chin tuck, you can also work on improving the rest of your body posture. In addition to gum chewing, I like to mix in some repetitions mashing the gum against my hard palate with my tongue (your goal is to increase the resting muscle tone of both the tongue and masseters in balance). Dr. Mew's video uses a caliper to measure the intermolar width. You could probably purchase an inexpensive caliper from a hardware store. I have used dental floss that I inserted between my first and second molars and then marked with a pen. I've also used a tailor's tape. Both of these methods are imperfect but give you a close approximation. When I made impressions of my teeth I was able to confirm the measurement using a ruler. Dr. Mew wrote in the comments of one of his videos: "modern adults (or anyone over the age of 9) tend to have a molar width of 29 to 34mm. Anyone with 35 to 38mm will find it much easier but still very hard to make progressive improvements without any formal therapy." If your intermolar width is below 35mm, you might consider using a palate expander to gain more tongue space. There are other optional treatment modalities that you could explore including facepulling/extra-oral traction, NCR/nasal release, craniosacral therapy, nutritional changes, buteyko breathing, mouth taping etc. It's probably more important to get the oral posture basics figured out before moving on to more advanced techniques. Good luck!

ReplyQuote
Posted : 10/03/2018 9:39 pm
Johan
 Johan
(@Johan)
Guest

Thank You for Your reply, Apollo. I've measured my width with floss and it's  ~4.1 cm. I'll buy a caliper because  I'm suspicious about my result. I do the push swallow, but not as an exercise,  I do it to retrieve proper tongue posture. Maybe I should do it more often and with more effort. 

How much time does it take to get hollow cheeks?

 Does mewing line up lips? Because my lips are similar to those in this picture:

Dent Between Nose And Mouth

Also, does mewing decrease this cavity between chin and lower lip?

ReplyQuote
Posted : 11/03/2018 6:28 am
Progress
(@progress)
Member Moderator
Posted by: Johan

Thank You for Your reply, Apollo. I've measured my width with floss and it's  ~4.1 cm. I'll buy a caliper because  I'm suspicious about my result. I do the push swallow, but not as an exercise,  I do it to retrieve proper tongue posture. Maybe I should do it more often and with more effort. 

How much time does it take to get hollow cheeks?

 Does mewing line up lips? Because my lips are similar to those in this picture:

Dent Between Nose And Mouth

Also, does mewing decrease this cavity between chin and lower lip?

I have similar lips. What should ideally happen is that the mandible/lower lip expands/moves/projects forward in relation to the maxilla/upper lip. This rotates and pulls the lower lip inward into the mouth, reducing the "E" cavity you are talking about.

ReplyQuote
Posted : 11/03/2018 11:57 am
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As you undergo correction in the near future, please consider keeping records for your own sake and for others. Pictures of dental impressions, scans, medical reports reports can be very helpful even with all personally identifying information blocked out.

Your input could help many, many people

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