Information for Professionals
You are a healthcare specialist: Why should you work with a craniofacial therapist?
The craniofacial therapist can work with diagnoses from multiple disciplines. It increases efficiency when multiple exams are reduced, and the resulting benefits in terms of cost and patient comfort are obvious.
- Speech therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Oral and maxillofacial surgery
- Pain therapy
- TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine)
- clinical psychology
- art therapy
- Hypnosis and other recognized therapies
- Preschool remedial education
- Early childhood education
- Special education
Why is the education open to people who do not come exclusively from the medical field? Because it is a holistic approach that includes communication skills, development (of the child) and observation, in addition to the scientific aspects (anatomy, posture).
The work on fascia, especially that of Dr. Guimberteau (Promenade sous la peau – French – Strolling under the Skin – English), has shown that a trauma suffered by the body in one place has an impact on its entirety, since fasciae are surrounded everywhere by muscles, organs, nerves, etc. that surround them. They form chains that interact with each other and also affect the emotions of each individual.
Pillars of Craniofacial Therapy
K-o-s-t® (German: Körper-Orientierung-Sprach-Therapie or translated as Body-Orientation-Speech-Therapy) is a concept developed by Dr. h.c. Susanne Codoni for the treatment of people with speech and language disorders or other various disabilities. This therapy stands at the crossroads between orthodox medicine, complementary medicine and pedagogy. It is not limited to speech therapists. In order to treat the functional deficits of the patient, this holistic approach is based on each resource of the person. The interdisciplinary collaboration provides an overview and a treatment concept based on it. This approach is based on four pillars:
The craniofacial therapist starts by observing the posture and stabilizing it by stimulating the k-o-s-t®. If the weaknesses or deviations are too great, he will enlist the help of a physiotherapist or osteopath. Here the collaboration is important to communicate what has already been done with the patient. The communication pillar is very important and is based on the knowledge of neurolinguistic programming (NLP).
In order to re-learn good swallowing and speech, the patient’s posture must be stabilized. This makes the work easier for the orthodontist or the oral surgeon.
Detailed information on k-o-s-t® as well as eduction courses
FBL - Funktions-Bewegungslehre (Function Movement Theory)
For his observations, the craniofacial therapist uses terms familiar to physiotherapists trained in Basel: the FBL (Function Movement Theory) of S. Klein-Vogelbach. This approach allows the therapist to analyze static posture and gait and measure the differences. The craniofacial therapist is not a physical therapist (unless he has completed a master’s degree after becoming a physical therapist). He uses the terms of FBL to observe and describe the situation. Depending on the observations made, he will suggest body stabilization exercises (e.g. using ball exercises or k-o-s-t® ). But if the deviations are too big, he needs the help of a physiotherapist, osteopath or even a doctor. This expertise enables the therapist to understand the diagnosis of the physiotherapist.
MFT - Myofunctional therapy
Myofunctional therapy (developed in the 1960s by Daniel Garliner in Florida) treats orofacial dysfunctions. Through exercises, it helps patients position their tongue in their mouth and find or regain a good swallowing pattern. This doesn’t just affect children. In fact, some adults maintain atypical swallowing throughout their lives. The low position of the tongue in the mouth can be the cause of headaches, neck pain, breathing difficulties, poor speech, etc. Chewing is also not optimal and causes digestive problems.
The MFT taught in Basel is called the “Basel Ball Concept of Myofunctional Therapy”. It is a holistic approach to goal-oriented patient care through interdisciplinary work.
Speech therapists can also bring in a craniofacial therapist to complement their therapy. The therapist does not work on sounds or pronunciation, but on muscles.
The face is an essential part of our identity. It reflects our emotions, allows us to communicate, have a social life, and have self-confidence. That is why a psychologist may need interdisciplinary work. Craniofacial therapy also treats scars (keloid or hypertrophic). Not only for beauty (an important social factor) and self-image, but also because the skin is an important sensor of our proprioception. Any scar disturbs the fascia and the perception of the body in space.
Therefore, the therapy can be useful after operations or accidents. The oral surgeon can consult a craniofacial therapist after surgery.