Functional Orthodontics & Orthotropics (start here!)

If you’re trying to learn more about functional/epigenetic orthodontics and orthotropics, including topics like palate expansion, maxilla advancement/facial growth, and proper tongue posture…you’re in the right place!

This page will be an ongoing effort to compile and organize information on these topics. Because a functional approach to orthodontics and dentistry is still relatively “fringe,” especially in adults, it can be difficult to wade through the various forum threads and youtube videos and anecdotes and websites (sketchy or otherwise) that are out there, and impossible to know what information to trust. I hope that by putting all the information in one place, it’ll make it easier for you to navigate and learn so you can draw your own conclusions.

Important: I’m no authority on these topics, and have no dental/orthodontic/medical training, so nothing on this website should be taken as medical advice. Also, the inclusion of something on this page does not mean I like it, have experience with it, or otherwise endorse it – I’m just putting it all out there for you guys to explore.

So, to that end…if you know of any good resources that I’m missing, leave a comment and I’ll be sure to add it! This is definitely still a work in progress, and I expect to add many more links and tidbits over the coming months.


My Experience

The following posts document my own experience with palate expansion and facepulling as an adult (24 years old when I began in early 2018). Prepare for an emotional rollercoaster.

Adult Palate Expansion Diary: Introduction

Adult Palate Expansion Diary #1

Adult Palate Expansion Diary #2

APE Diary #3: Gaps Achieved!

APE Diary #4: Discovering Dr. Brad Lockhart

APE Diary #5: My Consult with Dr. Brad Lockhart

The DNA Appliance Has Arrived! (APE Diary #6)

5-Month Palate Expansion Progress Photos

Palate Expansion Update: Concerning CBCT Scan Results

A Non-Update Update



These are all personal blogs (like this one!) of others who have documented their journeys and experiments (in no particular order).

Ronald Ead
Pre-dental student talks about his experience using the Anterior Growth Guidance Appliance (AGGA) to improve his neck posture and help with chronic migraines. He documented his experience very thoroughly, including his failed attempt (very similar to mine!) at expansion with a more traditional three-way acrylic expander, so this is an awesome resource. Definitely check it out!

Claiming Power
The OG. Or at least, the first resource I came across when I started learning about all this stuff several years ago. Last I checked, you had to be a paid member to access much of his content, but he still had some stuff up for free.

Ry’s Dental Journey
Experience with the Vivos DNA Appliance, reverse-pull headgear, etc.

Facial Growth Orthodontics with Daniel
Not really a personal blog, but a lengthy patient testimonial/blog on the website of a practitioner in Missouri. Great documentation of his experience with AGGA though!

Scott Gets Mouthy
Using the Vivos DNA Appliance, primarily to treat sleep apnea.

DNA Smiles
Results with the DNA Appliance – last post was in 2015, but really impressive B&A photos!

My Experience with the DNA Appliance (not mine; that’s just the title of the blog!)
Rick’s experience with the DNA; last post was in 2013

Health Matters to Me
Experience with the Homeoblock.

Reverse Dental
Michael’s (38 yo) experience using upper and lower “bicuspid opener” expanders to reverse extraction/retraction orthodontics.

Orgone Energy
Kevin’s experience using Homeoblock and NCR to solve health problems from extraction/retraction orthodontics (plus a bunch of other unrelated stuff, so I linked to the “Orthodontics” category instead of the blog home page).


Forums/Other Websites

Some of these look extra sketchy, and everyone knows you can’t trust people on internet forums, but nonetheless, I’ve learned some very helpful things from these sites. (Again, in no particular order.)

Break the Matrix
This is a forum dedicated to discussing NCR, facepulling, and similar topics. Mike Mew and Ian Hedley even make appearances in some threads!

The Great Work
From what I can gather, this is sort of part personal blog, part forum, part informational website.

The Craniofacial Action Group
A Facebook group that Mike Mew is an admin of where people discuss all this stuff.
Anonymous facepuller’s website.
I think this is Mike Mew’s website, or at least one he’s affiliated with.


Palate Expansion

This is a list of devices I’ve heard of being used for palate expansion in adults. Where possible, I’ve linked to other websites/resources where you can learn more about them, or at least read about others’ experience using them.


Face Pulling (non-surgical maxillary advancement)

This is a list of devices/techniques I’ve heard of being used for non-surgical maxillary advancement/”face pulling” in adults.

  • facemask (standard reverse-pull headgear; my experience here)
  • the Crane
  • BOW
  • DIY hockey helmet approach
  • AGGA (this fits in both categories, because it supposedly expands the maxilla forward by putting pressure on a specific spot in the upper palate)
  • mouthguard & shoelace method (not kidding – see Walrus’ posts on this forum page)
  • Mew Vector (Mike Mew’s custom headgear; youtube video here)
  • Facemax (superseded by CROME/CROM-face)
  • Crome


Other Related Therapies

Pretty much just that. Other related therapies that don’t fit the above categories, but that I’ve seen people use or recommend to achieve some of the same goals.

  • Mewing (this is a big one that deserves (and will eventually have) its own section, but for now, “mewing” encompasses all of Mike Mew’s teachings on proper oral posture, including tongue posture, swallowing technique, chewing, lip and cheek posture, etc. Here is his YouTube channel with loads of good info.)
  • NCR (Neurocranial Restructuring; basically inflating a balloon deep inside your nasal cavity to prompt beneficial remodeling of the cranial bones)
  • Starecta (uses an oral appliance to improve whole-body posture)