Oral Motor

Oral Motor skills are needed to coordinate the muscles and movement of the mouth. These skills allow children to successfully suck, swallow, eat, and speak. Children who experience challenges with their oral motor skills will often have trouble coordinating the oral muscles when sucking, swallowing and eating. In addition, these movements are all necessary when attempting to produce words. Children with weak oral motor skills may demonstrate excessive drooling or speech delays because they have trouble using and coordinating the movements of the lips, tongue, and jaw to produce speech sounds. Toys that encourage oral sensory awareness and encourage chewing, biting, and teething can improve oral motor skills. To encourage forming an O shape with the mouth, kids can suck on a straw, blow a whistle, drink from a water bottle, or blow bubbles with a bubble wand. Children can also improve oral sensory awareness, mouth muscle coordination, movement, and strength by using teething or chewing toys.

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