Int J Stomatol ›› 2023, Vol. 50 ›› Issue (6): 723-728.doi: 10.7518/gjkq.2023109

• Reviews • Previous Articles     Next Articles

The influencing factors and clinical significance of tongue position

Yang Dongye1(),Zhu Ping1,Wu Shuyi2()   

  1. 1.Dept. of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Hospital of Stomatology, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510055, China
    2.Dept. of Prosthodontics, Hospital of Stomatology, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510055, China
  • Received:2023-03-02 Revised:2023-07-06 Online:2023-11-01 Published:2023-10-24
  • Contact: Shuyi Wu;
  • Supported by:
    Appropriate Health Technology Promotion Project of Guangdong Province(2022-07021102078724)


The tongue is an organ with multiple functions. Tongue position is closely related to the function of the stomatognathic system. Tongue position is affected by inheritance, acquired behavior, respiratory pattern, teeth loss, defective denture, and other factors. Considering the tongue’s anatomical and physiological connections, medical staff should be conscious of the fact that incorrect tongue position may lead to different local and systemic dysfunctions. Tongue position assessment should be included in clinical examinations to improve the effect of treatments. Knowledge of tongue position is limited in China. This paper reviews the definition and influencing factors of tongue position, the influence of tongue position on the body, and the evaluation and treatment of tongue position to improve the correct knowledge of tongue position among medical staff and to provide references for clinical work.

Key words: tongue position, orofacial myofunctional therapy, malocclusion

CLC Number: 

  • R 783.5


Tab 1

Different tongue positions and their malocclusions"

1 何三纲. 口腔解剖生理学[M]. 8版. 北京: 人民卫生出版社, 2020: 112.
He SG. Oral anatomy and physiology[M]. 8th ed. Beijing: People’s Medical Publishing House, 2020: 112.
2 Rajeshwari K, Kohli S, Mathew XK. Evaluation of resting tongue position in recently extracted and long term completely edentulous patients: a prospective interventional study[J]. J Clin Diagn Res, 2017, 11(4): ZC61-ZC63.
3 史真. 口面肌功能治疗临床诊疗手册[M]. 北京: 人民卫生出版社, 2016.
Shi Z. Clinical diagnosis and treatment manual of orofacial myofunctional therapy[M]. Beijing: People’s Medical Publishing House, 2016.
4 Hanson ML, Mason RM. 口面肌肉学国际共识[M]. 贺红, 史真, 主译. 沈阳: 辽宁科学技术出版社, 2020: 3-30.
Hanson ML, Mason RM. International consensus on orofacial muscularity[M]. He H, Shi Z, transl. Shenyang: Liaoning Science and Technology Press, 2020: 3-30.
5 D’Onofrio L. Oral dysfunction as a cause of malocclusion[J]. Orthod Craniofac Res, 2019, 22(): 43-48.
6 Shah SS, Nankar MY, Bendgude VD, et al. Orofacial myofunctional therapy in tongue thrust habit: a narrative review[J]. Int J Clin Pediatr Dent, 2021, 14(2): 298-303.
7 Rogers AP. Exercises for the development of muscles of face with view to increasing their functional activity[J]. Dental Cosmos, 1918, 59: 857-876.
8 林川, 李宇, 刘媛, 等. 基于CBCT矢状向切片图像的静息舌位研究初探[J]. 实用口腔医学杂志, 2020, 36(3): 469-472.
Lin C, Li Y, Liu Y, et al. A study of resting tongue position based on the sagittal slice images of CBCT[J]. J Pract Stomatol, 2020, 36(3): 469-472.
9 Buscemi A, Coco M, Rapisarda A, et al. Tongue stretching: technique and clinical proposal[J]. J Complement Integr Med, 2022, 19(2): 487-491.
10 Gurani SF, Cattaneo PM, Rafaelsen SR, et al. The effect of altered head and tongue posture on upper airway volume based on a validated upper airway analysis-an MRI pilot study[J]. Orthod Craniofac Res, 2020, 23(1): 102-109.
11 卢红云, 黄昭鸣. 口部运动治疗学[M]. 上海: 华东师范大学出版社, 2010: 36-77.
Lu HY, Huang ZM. Mouth kinematics[M]. Shanghai: East China Normal University Press, 2010: 36-77.
12 黄昭鸣, 杜晓新. 言语障碍的评估与矫治[M]. 上海: 华东师范大学出版社, 2006: 9.
Huang ZM, Du XX. Evaluation and correction of speech disorders[M]. Shanghai: East China Normal University Press, 2006: 9.
13 Kotsiomiti E, Farmakis N, Kapari D. Factors related to the resting tongue position among partially and completely edentulous subjects[J]. J Oral Rehabil, 2005, 32(6): 397-402.
14 Wright CR. Evaluation of the factors necessary to develop stability in mandibular dentures[J]. J Prosthet Dent, 1966, 16(3): 414-430.
15 Assaf DDC, Knorst JK, Busanello-Stella AR, et al. Association between malocclusion, tongue position and speech distortion in mixed-dentition schoolchildren: an epidemiological study[J]. J Appl Oral Sci, 2021, 29: e20201005.
16 Campanha SMA, Martinelli RLC, Palhares DB. Position of lips and tongue in rest in newborns with and without ankyloglossia[J]. Codas, 2021, 33(6): e20200069.
17 Martinelli RLC, Marchesan IQ, Gusmão RJ, et al. Effect of lingual frenotomy on tongue and lip rest position: a nonrandomized clinical trial[J]. Int Arch Otorhinolaryngol, 2022, 26(1): e069-e074.
18 Baxter R. Tongue tied: how a tiny string under the tongue impacts nursing, speech, feeding, and more[M]. Pelham, The United States of America: Alabama Tongue-Tie Center, 2018: 51.
19 Abate A, Cavagnetto D, Fama A, et al. Relationship between breastfeeding and malocclusion: a systema-tic review of the literature[J]. Nutrients, 2020, 12(12): 3688.
20 Neiva FC, Wertzner HF. A protocol for oral myofunctional assessment: for application with children[J]. Int J Orofacial Myology, 1996, 22: 8-19.
21 Silveira LM, Prade LS, Ruedell AM, et al. Influence of breastfeeding on children’s oral skills[J]. Rev Saude Publica, 2013, 47(1): 37-43.
22 Boronat-Catalá M, Montiel-Company JM, Bellot-Arcís C, et al. Association between duration of breastfeeding and malocclusions in primary and mixed dentition: a systematic review and meta-ana-lysis[J]. Sci Rep, 2017, 7(1): 5048.
23 Marchesan IQ, Berretin-Félix G, Genaro KF. MBGR protocol of orofacial myofunctional evaluation with scores[J]. Int J Orofacial Myology, 2012, 38: 38-77.
24 Bordoni B, Morabito B, Mitrano R, et al. The anatomical relationships of the tongue with the body system[J]. Cureus, 2018, 10(12): e3695.
25 杨冬叶, 何杏芳, 沙秀娟, 等. 上颌阻塞器序列修复联合口面肌功能治疗促进牙龈癌患者口颌功能康复的个案管理[J]. 中国实用护理杂志, 2021, 37(18): 1432-1435.
Yang DY, He XF, Sha XJ, et al. Case management of a patient with gingival cancer who took the obturator prosthesis combined with orofacial myofunctional therapy to promote the rehabilitation of oral and maxillofacial function[J]. Chin J Prac Nurs, 2021, 37(18): 1432-1435.
26 Fatima F, Fida M. The assessment of resting tongue posture in different sagittal skeletal patterns[J]. Dental Press J Orthod, 2019, 24(3): 55-63.
27 van Dyck C, Dekeyser A, Vantricht E, et al. The effect of orofacial myofunctional treatment in children with anterior open bite and tongue dysfunction: a pilot study[J]. Eur J Orthod, 2016, 38(3): 227-234.
28 John M. The cause and cure of malocclusion[EB/OL]. [2020-09-04]. .
29 Iwasaki T, Sato H, Suga H, et al. Relationships among nasal resistance, adenoids, tonsils, and tongue posture and maxillofacial form in Class Ⅱ and Class Ⅲ children[J]. Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop, 2017, 151(5): 929-940.
30 Primozic J, Farcnik F, Perinetti G, et al. The association of tongue posture with the dentoalveolar maxillary and mandibular morphology in Class Ⅲ malocclusion: a controlled study[J]. Eur J Orthod, 2013, 35(3): 388-393.
31 Maspero C, Prevedello C, Giannini L, et al. Atypical swallowing: a review[J]. Minerva Stomatol, 2014, 63(6): 217-227.
32 Villa MP, Evangelisti M, Martella S, et al. Can myofunctional therapy increase tongue tone and reduce symptoms in children with sleep-disordered brea-thing[J]. Schlaf Atmung, 2017, 21(4): 1025-1032.
33 Corrêa CC, Weber SAT, Evangelisti M, et al. The short evaluation of orofacial myofunctional protocol (ShOM) and the sleep clinical record in pediatric obstructive sleep apnea[J]. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol, 2020, 137: 110240.
34 Fougeront N, Fleiter B. Temporomandibular disorder and comorbid neck pain: facts and hypotheses regarding pain-induced and rehabilitation-induced motor activity changes[J]. Can J Physiol Pharmacol, 2018, 96(11): 1051-1059.
35 Schmidt JE, Carlson CR, Usery AR, et al. Effects of tongue position on mandibular muscle activity and heart rate function[J]. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod, 2009, 108(6): 881-888.
36 杨冬叶, 陈莺, 黄紫娴, 等. 颞下颌关节不可复性盘前移位患者的口面肌功能训练[J]. 护理学杂志, 2021, 36(4): 73-75.
Yang DY, Chen Y, Huang ZX, et al. Orofacial myofunctional therapy for patients with temporomandi-bular joint anterior disc displacement without reduction[J]. J Nurs Sci, 2021, 36(4): 73-75.
37 de Felício CM, Ferreira CLP. Protocol of orofacial myofunctional evaluation with scores[J]. Int J Pe-diatr Otorhinolaryngol, 2008, 72(3): 367-375.
38 Bakke M, Bergendal B, McAllister A, et al. Deve-lopment and evaluation of a comprehensive scree-ning for orofacial dysfunction[J]. Swed Dent J, 2007, 31(2): 75-84.
39 杨冬叶, 余晓曼, 何一青. 口面肌功能治疗在口颌系统疾病中的应用进展[J]. 中国康复医学杂志, 2022, 37(4): 562-565.
Yang DY, Yu XM, He YQ. Application progress of functional therapy of orofacial muscles in diseases of oral and maxillofacial system[J]. Chin J Rehabil Med, 2022, 37(4): 562-565.
[1] Xu Shukui,Zhang Shan,Xie Xinyu,Ma Wensheng.. Progress in research into the long-term stability of maxillary protraction therapy in skeletal classmalocclusion [J]. Int J Stomatol, 2023, 50(6): 646-652.
[2] Wang Luodan,Fan Hong. Morphological characteristics of sella turcica and its relationship with malocclusion [J]. Int J Stomatol, 2023, 50(6): 653-660.
[3] Zhao Zhihe.. Difficulty assessment of invisible orthodontic treatment based on treatment plan and tooth movement pattern [J]. Int J Stomatol, 2022, 49(4): 373-379.
[4] He Hong.. Clinical diagnosis and strategies for early orthodontic treatment of Class Ⅲ malocclusion with tonsillar hypertrophy in children [J]. Int J Stomatol, 2022, 49(3): 249-254.
[5] Zhang Shizhen,Lai Wenli. Research progress on maxillary protraction methods and auxiliary maxillary expansion for skeletal Class Ⅲ malocclusion [J]. Int J Stomatol, 2021, 48(3): 354-361.
[6] Chen Yu,Jiang Huan,Liu Nan,Lu Chenmeng,Tang Zhongyuan,Han Ruyu,Hu Min. Effects of orthodontic treatment on changes in upper airway and peripheral structure in patients with skeletal Class Ⅱ malocclusion [J]. Int J Stomatol, 2019, 46(5): 578-584.
[7] Yanli Liu,Wei Zhao,Biying Zhang,Xiaoli An. Research progress on maxillary protraction with skeletal anchorage in growing patients with Class Ⅲ malocclusion [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2019, 46(1): 112-118.
[8] Zhang Wenqi, Wang Hong, Han Yu, Yang Shuangyan, Wang Ruifang, Wang Chunling. An investigation of parents’ knowledge-attitude-practice of early preventive and treatment for malocclusions [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2018, 45(4): 403-407.
[9] Sun Chengjun, Xu Fangqing, Chen Yangping, Liu Fengyi, Luo Jiaying, Xia Binbin. Impacts of malocclusion on daily performances in urban and rural children [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2017, 44(3): 304-309.
[10] Huang Guiyue, Liu Bo, Chen Meihong, Xu Yanhua.. Investigation and analysis of malocclusion in primary dentition of Kunming residents [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2017, 44(2): 141-143.
[11] Zou Jing1, Qin Man2, Wang Jun3, Huang Hua4, Lin Juhong5, Zhou Xuedong1.. Common dental diseases in children and malocclusion [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2016, 43(6): 619-623.
[12] Du Yajing, Yao Hongying, Huang Shiyan, Xu Shuhao, Rao Nanquan, Li Xiaobing. Analysis of the correlative factors of the nasolabial angle of patients with Angle’s Class Ⅱ division 1 malocclusion in Chengdu [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2016, 43(2): 155-158.
[13] Tan Xuelian, Ning Jiali, Chen Helin, He Linlin, Zhao Zhihe. Influence of extraction and non-extraction treatment on esthetic perception of frontal smile and resting profile [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2015, 42(2): 147-151.
[14] Sun Qiuhua, Xiao Danna, Gao Hui, Dou Zesheng. Correlation between malocclusion and oral health-related life quality in university students [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2015, 42(2): 156-159.
[15] Yan Yan1,2, Du Xi2.. A morphological study of the characteristics and relationship between soft tissue and hard tissue profile in adolescents of skeletal Class Ⅲ malocclusion with different facial types [J]. Inter J Stomatol, 2014, 41(4): 401-405.
Full text



[1] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[2] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[3] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[4] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[5] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[6] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[7] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[8] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[9] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .
[10] . [J]. Foreign Med Sci: Stomatol, 1999, 26(06): .