AID our Children with a HealthyStart® for Life

by Leslie Stevens, HealthyStart® by Ortho-Tain® CEO/President
How are we treating children that exhibit sleep, breathing or airway issues? In many instances we look to remove tonsils and adenoids, tape a child’s mouth, provide myofunctional therapy or possibly even expand the arches. Is this enough?
The answer lies in a uniquely multi-dimensional treatment system called the HealthyStart® which addresses the underlying root causes by expanding the arches, promoting growth and development, and addressing improper habits while creating proper habits simultaneously. The HealthyStart® system uses a series of oral appliances typically worn at night while sleeping.
Research involving 501 children showed that 9 out of 10 children will exhibit one or more outward symptoms of Sleep-Related Breathing Disorders. These outward symptoms can be identified through the HealthyStart® questionnaire, where parents indicate their child’s applicable symptoms and provides the degree of prevalence. On average, children will have four outward symptoms, which can include: ADD/ADHD, Headaches, Nightmares, Teeth Grinding, Bed Wetting, Difficulty in School, Chronic Allergies, Restless Sleep, Dark Circles Under Eyes, Mouth Breathing, Daytime Drowsiness, Snoring, Swollen Tonsils/Adenoids, Delayed Growth and Defiance/Aggression.
Some habits are expressed as behaviors that are either repetitive or patterns that are instigated by sleep. Examples of repetitive habits are thumb sucking, tongue thrust, mouth breathing, etc. which can be addressed with myofunctional therapy. Each HealthyStart® Habit Corrector contains myofunctional therapy built into the appliance, activated by swallowing. During sleep, we swallow one time a minute and during the day we swallow two times a minute. When a child wears the HealthyStart® appliance at night, 500 corrective repetitions occur to create a proper swallow, eliminate mouth breathing, create nasal breathing and eliminating tongue thrusts. This assures that myofunctional therapy occurs with wear and guarantees constant reinforcement, even during sleep when it is most needed.

Figure 1: Initial treatment

Other habits instigated by sleep include bruxism, fidgeting, headaches, bed wetting, allergies, asthma, etc. which HealthyStart® addresses by influencing positive changes in sleep, breathing and the airway.
The HealthyStart® System promotes growth and development by influencing jaw growth in a forward and downward direction while eliminating detrimental malocclusions and deficiencies in jaw development and growth. HealthyStart treats any overbite, overjet, openbite, crossbite, gummy smile, Class lll and deficiencies in both the upper and lower arches. The HealthyStart® system will promote 54% growth in the mandible as compared to the control sample. The HealthyStart treatment allows maximum airway development.
Figure 2: In-progress

The System expands arches to gain greater nasal breathing and provide an area for the tongue to position in the upper palate. The proprietary HealthyStart® technique incorporates built-in myofunctional therapy with a ramp to lift tongue and expansion tabs to flatten tongue and to add pressure for expansion of the arches. Additional expansion is gained with the eruption of teeth. The HealthyStart® system utilizes natural eruptive forces of the teeth to gain approximately 4 mm of expansion. Typically the expansion that is gained with use of the HealthyStart® system represents 77% of the needed expansion of the pediatric patients.
Figure 3: Final

Learn more about the HealthyStart® technique, which addresses the underlying root causes of SRBD, creates dramatic changes in occlusions, promotes jaw growth, creates proper habits and eliminates poor habits all while expanding the arches. Complimentary educational webinars are available at, and 1 CE credit is provided.
Make a more permanent change for your sleep patient by treating early and treating for life.

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