How do you make a bite block for speech therapy?

17 Aug

I’ve noticed that I get several hits a week from people who want to learn about bite blocks so I thought I’d post about them!

I learned about the bite block this year in my motor speech disorder course. They are primarily used to improve intelligibility by facilitating an open mouth.

Any number of items could be used as a bite block – in class we learned of a man who constantly held a pipe in his mouth despite that fact that he didn’t smoke. He just used it so that he would look “normal”. A bite block can also be placed on a retainer, palatal lift, or any other oral prosthesis.

So, how do you make one? I will tell you.

Materials: dental putty and catalyst

You’ll need a little spoonful of the putty and the catalyst. They should be different colors so that when you squash them together they change color. Rub the two together and form a little square. You don’t want to do this too long because the putty needs to be impressionable. Once you think you’ve got the right consistency and the color has changed throughout, place the square between the back molars. Our professor told us that to determine the size, bite down on the square with your thumb between your front teeth. This approximates the oral opening that we generally use for speech. Then once you think the impression has been made, remove the block and let it dry. You’ll want to be careful with how long you bite down because once the putty hardens it can crack.

EXAFAST PUTTY!

this is what you need. get it from your dentist. unless you make enough bite blocks to justify buying your own

NP: Eric Hutchinson – Outside Villanova (yeah. this song is about what you think it is about)

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One Response to “How do you make a bite block for speech therapy?”

  1. kubs August 18, 2011 at 11:20 am #

    Also, if you do not have access to the putty you can always get it from a local dentist. Probably free of charge! As our professor put it, “No dentist will deny you a small amount of putty, especially when you tell him it is for a sick child.”

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