Attractive Face or Not? It depends on Tongue Posture


Is the structure of your face 100% determined
by your genes? Or, can you change the bone structure of a
person’s face without surgery? Here we have a 10 year old boy with a strong
jawline and overall good looking face …who went on to develop flat cheeks, a receded
chin, a weak jawline and a slight hook in the nose by the age of 17. If this was the work of genes, why would they
work hard to make a good looking face until age ten but slack off after that? Well, right around age 10 the boy got a pet
gerbil which he kept in his bedroom. He was allergic to the animal and his nose
became stuffy and obstructed – forcing him to separate his lips, lower his tongue and
open his mouth, otherwise he couldn’t breathe. Next, take a look at these two brothers: Ben
has a slightly flatter and longer face where Quentin’s face seems to have grown more
forwards rather than vertically. I think most would agree that Quentin’s
face is a bit more attractive. So did Quentin just get lucky and get the
better genes? Probably not, because what’s striking about
these brothers is that they are identical twins, the only difference is one had traditional
orthodontic treatment and the other was treated by Dr. John Mew with what’s called an Orthotropic
treatment. Orthotropics and its principles are extensively
discussed on the Orthotropics youtube channel by Doctors Mike and John Mew. Simply put, it is a method for achieving proper
development of the face. Developed in 1966, the general goal of orthotropics
is to guide the the upper and lower jaws to grow forwards. Here’s another example of Orthotropic treatment
on a little girl where Dr. Kevin Boyd advanced the Maxilla – he got the bone of the midface
to come forward, without surgery. Here’s another example from Mike Mew where
the maxilla was brought forward, again without surgery. I think most would agree that both girls have
achieved a better looking face. What makes this possible? Well, as these examples would suggest, the
development of the facial skeleton is not fixed. The bones of the skull are held together by
fibrous joints called sutures. The maxilla, the bone of the upper mouth is
connected to the cranium and face by several sutures. And, the interesting part is that these sutures
are not fused together. New bone can still be made at the sutures
– even in adults. In fact, certain sutures do not begin to fuse
until 68-72 years of age, which is why the positioning of bones of the skull can be useful
information in forensics and archeology. As Dr. Felix Liao, author of Six-Foot Tiger,
Three-Foot cage explains, “…the potential for maxilla-facial redevelopment is alive
even late in adult life.” There are clear examples of structural change
in an adult’s facial skeletons – when the nerves in the face have been damaged, the
lack of muscle tone can morph the facial bones. Here is Mike Mew showing the shift in facial
bones on a woman who was affected by a disease of the muscles. Not a disease of the bone, but an affliction
to the muscles has morphed her facial skeleton this much. A more famous example is Stephen Hawking,
who was afflicted with a motor neuron disease, yet the bones in his face seem to have also
changed drastically over the years. So what about adults changing their facial
skeleton for the better? Here’s one example from the Orthotropics
youtube channel. Here’s another from Dr. John Mew’s website. And, In this research article by Professor
G. Dave Singh what they call “Facial Enhancement” has been achieved in a 19 and 26 year old
by applying orthotropic principles for only 1 year. The 26 year old’s eyeliner is giving her
a bit of an advantage in the second photo, so let’s cover that up. If you look closely, you’ll see the 26 year
old has a more pronounced jaw and the face has shortened and come forward a bit, which
makes the midface appear fuller. . In fact, 12 adults participated participated
in the study, and several facial angles were measured to track objective change in the
face. They found significant changes in the labiomental
and thyromandibular angles …concluding that their approach “may enhance facial appearance
non-surgically in adults.” OK, let’s cut to the chase – How can we
move the bones of the face around to have a better functioning, better looking face? Well, one simple way is to follow what John
Mew calls the tropic premise: “Rest the tongue on the palate with the lips sealed
and the teeth in light contact for four to eight hours a day.” This might not sound like a big deal, but
the tongue is a relatively big muscle and can exert plenty of force on the maxilla. It’s plausible that having this large muscle
press up and forwards on the maxilla for 8 hours a day and hopefully while you’re sleeping,
over a few years, this can make noticeable changes in the structure of the face. But hold on a moment — these improvements
I just showed you were made using appliances that fit in the mouth and exert the necessary
forces on the skull required for facial change. It’s been tough to find people who made
improvements just by maintaining good oral posture over the years. But, I’ve dug up three examples. Each person seems to have started at a relatively
young age, and I don’t have many specifics they are worth looking at: Here’s a post on a forum of someone who was
apparently 15 in the first photo, and 21 in the second. The angles are quite different, but if this
is these are the same person… it’s a drastic change even given 5 years. This is from youtube channel meaganxrose – the
only information I have is that this picture on the left was taken 3 years before the one
on the right . She may have lost some weight as well, but here’s her in a recent video. Her cheekbones and jaw appear much more pronounced. One more example is youtuber AstroSky. He apparently began working on back and tongue
posture when he was 16. Here are two pictures when he was around 16
or 17 and here’s him at 18. Here’s him now at 22. It’s not shocking that the face would change
from 16 to 22 years old , but this is a particularly drastic change. This would suggest that his maxilla has come
forward. These three examples are again not the strongest
pieces of evidence but they at least show that the face can change to some degree without
appliances or surgery. Another effect of having the tongue on the
roof of the mouth is that – especially when young, it widens the dental arch, which helps
to have straight teeth. Though I think most would assume that straight
or crooked teeth are genetic. So if it’s not genetic, what causes crooked
teeth? In this paper by Dr. Kevin Boyd, he states
that “dental caries (as in cavities) and malocclusion (which means misaligned or crooked
teeth) while now highly prevalent public health diseases, are both surprisingly rare within
the pre-industrial skeletal and pre-historic fossil records, and also seldom seen in many
present-day nonwesternized cultures.” This is very striking considering according
to Proffit’s 1994 Contemporary Orthodontics, 2/3rds of the US population has some degree
of malocclusion – misalignment of the teeth. Yet, malocclusion with a known cause is listed
as only 5% percent of the population. That leaves 60% of people with malocclusion
for unknown reasons. In 1939 an American dentist named Weston Price
traveled around the world examining the oral health of both civilized groups living on
modern foods and isolated groups living on native diets. He published his results in a book titled
“Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.” What’s most interesting is the pictures
in the book. -Here we have girls from isolated valleys
of Switzerland and children from modernized districts of Switzerland. -Here we have native Alaskan Inuit people,
also called Eskimos, and on the right we have the first generation of children born after
the parents adopted a modern lifestyle. Notice how There is some wear on the teeth,
especially on this person, but the teeth are …straight. -Here we have isolated native Americans and
the first generation native Americans with a modern lifestyle. -Here we have people from islands in the southeastern
pacific …before and after adopting a modern lifestyle. -Then we have Samoans, a tribe in Belgian
Congo, Australian Aborigines and Andean Indians. -Here we have two brothers from the Isle of
Harris, the one on the left uses modern food, the one on the right native foods. There are several more examples in the book
of people living on their native diets with excellent teeth, and then people with similar
genes living on modern diets with unhealthy and crooked teeth. Paleoantrhopologist Daniel Lieberman reports
in his book “Evolution of the Human Head that “…jaws and faces do not grow to the
same size that they used to…”. And if we go back to these pictures, we notice
that these people have relatively broad faces with broad dental arches. If you compare a prehistoric skull to a modern
day skull, you’ll find that we used to have far broader dental arches. Weston Price’s book highlights the importance
of fat soluble vitamins in the diet for proper growth and development, but for this video
we’ll look at how a different characteristic of the diet can affect skull growth. Biological Anthropologist Clark Spencer Larson
says that agriculture instigated a fundamental change in human craniofacial growth and development. He highlights the use of cooking vessels as
an impactful innovation because they allowed for humans to make very soft mushy food that
required little chewing. He says such culinary adaptations resulted
in fundamental changes in craniofacial growth and development, resulting in reduced robustness,
increased malocclusion and increased tooth crowding. So, where people were gnawing on very fibrous
low calorie plant foods as well as raw and cooked meat, maybe having to chomp through
skin, cartilage and sinew and using their teeth as tools, they could now make porridges
and maybe some stews that provided much more calories for less masticatory effort. One piece of evidence for the significance
of having to chew more and harder is the fact that the skulls found with good occlusion
– with straight teeth are found with extensive wear on the teeth. As Rose and Roblee explain in this paper,
“Thorough analysis of dental data from the Armana Project has shown that Egyptian and
most ancient teeth have extensive tooth wear on even the youngest individuals. Malocclusion is rare in Amarna but very common
in America; tooth wear is extensive in Amarna yet rare in America.” And, Dental microwear analysis shows that
hunter gatherers ate a diet that wore down their teeth more than farmers. This would mean stronger masseter and temporalis
muscles – the muscles in the face involved in chewing. Spending most of your day chewing on things
hard enough to wear the teeth down to that extent could exert enough direct and indirect
force to morph the facial skeleton and dental arch. But there’s an unexpected effect of having
soft foods early in life. The idea is that when a baby is weaning off
breast milk, if they move onto hard foods, they would have to develop a different swallowing
pattern – If you have a straw or bottle nearby you can test for yourself to see what I mean. Your swallowing pattern when you suck up liquid
is different when you chew up something hard and then swallow it down. So if you wean the baby onto soft foods that
can be suckled down, the baby doesn’t fully develop a proper swallowing pattern. The swallowing pattern you want to develop
is where your tongue pushes tightly up against the palate to pull the food into the esophagus,
what you don’t want is to swallow with your tongue sucking on your teeth. It’s estimated that humans swallow around
600 times per day with about 2 pounds of force against the palate – this frequent force exerted
on the palate, as well as your resting tongue posture can affect the dental arch. Quite simply put if the tongue isn’t exerting
force on the roof of the mouth, and pushing the teeth outwards, they can come to cave
in. The upper arch should form like this, thanks
to the tongue pressing against the teeth, preventing the pressure of the cheeks from
pushing them in. But if the tongue isn’t holding the teeth
in place, the teeth can get crowded inwards: One more piece of evidence for this idea is
the work of Dr. Egil Harvold on rhesus monkeys. Rhesus monkeys,, when left to their own devices
will breathe through their noses with their lips touching and tongue resting on the soft
palate, and they have properly functioning, straight teeth. A 1981 paper describes how Dr. Harvald blocked
the nasal passage of monkeys with silicone nose plugs – this causes them to develop an
open mouth posture with the tongue pulled down off the roof of the mouth. So, what effect did this have? The paper reports that “the common finding
was a narrowing of the mandibular dental arch and a decrease in maxillary arch length, causing
an incisor cross-bite.” Simply put – by pulling the tongue down and
breathing through the mouth, the monkeys developed smaller dental arches and crooked teeth.