BACKGROUND: the literature points to the influence of body posture on the oral skills of children which sensorimotor deficits. Only a few studies with normal children exist on this subject. AIM: to study the relationship between motor skills and oral motor skills in children, from the first day of life to 24 months of age. METHOD: 42 children were video recorded at the first day of life, and at 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 12 and 24 months of age. Recordings were made in the following postures: supine, prone, seated, standing and during breast and bottle feeding (until 5 months), using spoon (purée: 3 - 12 months); cup (water or juice: 6 - 24months) and eating solid food (6 -24 months). Quantitative scores for body motor development and oral skills were established; and for the statistical analysis the Pearson Correlation Coefficient Test was used with a significance level of 5%. RESULTS: the results of motor development point to similar data between supine, prone, seated and standing positions; for the oral motor skills (during feeding/ breastfeeding, using spoon, cup and chewing). A similarity was observed in the acquisition of motor abilities related to the lips, tongue and jaw in each of the feeding situations. There was an association between the motor and the oral motor skills; the results indicate that the motor development (motor skills) occurred prior to the development of the oral skills from the 5th to 24 months and that the skills related to the jaw when using a cup and spoon occurred prior to the development of the skills related to the lips and tongue. CONCLUSION: there was a growing increase in the acquisition of motor and oral skills along the ages, as well as a variability of skills in the ages between the 3rd and 24 months and a significant association between the motor and oral skills.
Stomatognathic System; Children; Feeding; Oral Motor Development