Carol Krakower, M.A. CCC-SLP

Brook 35 Park

2130 Highway 35, Suite 311

Sea Girt, NJ 08750

Serving Monmouth County and Ocean County




Tongue Thrust

A tongue thrust occurs when the tongue protrudes through the teeth. The tongue usually protrudes through the front teeth, but can also protrude through the side teeth.

A child who has a tongue thrust often:

  • Does not swallow correctly
  • Pushes the tongue forward when speaking, creating articulation problems
  • Has dental problems, such as an “open bite” created by the tongue taking up space between the teeth. The teeth grow to accommodate the tongue, hence the upper and lower teeth do not meet.
  • Can develop cranio-facial problems. The tongue should be resting on the hard palate, because this tongue posture helps develop the palate correctly. Without the tongue on the hard palate, the palate bone can grow vertically into the sinus cavity, creating many different issues.
  • Needs the tongue thrust corrected so that orthodontia will work
Tongue thrusts are normal in infants. Infants use a forward-tongue sucking pattern to nurse and swallow. As a child approaches 4 years of age, he should develop a more mature swallowing pattern with the tongue resting on the hard palate. If you notice a tongue thrust, it should be corrected. Fortunately, correction is usually quite effective and is often covered by insurance.
Carol Krakower is one of only ten specially trained speech pathologists in New Jersey in Orofacial Myology, (which deals with muscle postures of the mouth) and is a member of the International Orofacial Myology Association. Tongue thrust is an immature muscle resting pattern. It can be corrected. Correcting it helps your child to speak clearly and swallow correctly, grow bones correctly and make orthodontia more effective. Give your child clear speech and a beautiful smile!
Speech-Language Pathologists