Healthy Start Certification



The demand for orthodontic treatment without braces continues to grow, globally. The impact treating children early can have on their overall health and development is remarkable. As the causes of malocclusions are being addressed, not just relying on mechanical forces to align the teeth. There is emerging awareness world-wide on the role dental professionals can and should have in the detection and treatment of sleep disordered breathing and sleep apnoea. Together with allied health professionals, who treat the soft tissue and muscular dysfunction. As well as dentists can provide Myofunctional Orthodontics to children of all ages, preventing or minimising the need for braces or maxillofacial surgery.
Dr Elina Castro & Nada Makki-Karnib will provide a comprehensive two day course.This course is teaching you how to screen for breathing-related sleep disorders, oromyofunctional disorders, tethered oral tissues and treat malocclusions from as early as 2 years of age. You will be introduced to the Planas Direct Tracks Treatment for correcting crossbites. Besides,  the Healthy Start by Orthotain appliances, the original Myofunctional appliances developed in the US over 50 years ago.

Course Objectives

Identify and evaluate Sleep Disordered Breathing (SDB) symptoms
• Understand the aetiology of malocclusions
• Assess for lip and tongue ties
• Identify oromyofunctional disorders
• Treat malocclusions in early and mixed dentition using the HealthyStart System – to
address the root cause of malocclusion, improve Dentofacial development and airways
and facilitate dental arch development
• Understand the option of treating early crossbites with the Planas Direct Tracks technique

Course Coordinators

Dr Elina Castro
Dr Elina Castro has over 20 years of experience working as a dentist both in Brazil and Australia. She has a special interest in treating malocclusion in deciduous dentition, with a focus on breaking unhealthy oral habits and restoring nasal breathing. As co-founder of the Dentofacial Institute, Elina works in conjunction with oral myofunctional therapists and functional appliances to facilitate optimal growth and development of the face. She also focuses on identifying and treating tongue and lip ties as early as possible to prevent feeding, speech, compromised facial growth and teeth crowding.

Nada Makki-Karnib
Nada Makki-Karnib is the principal speech pathologist at Q Speech & Learning Clinic with 20 years of combined experience as a hospital scientist and in private practice. She enjoys working with people of all ages in the treatment of communication and feeding disorders, with a special interest and expertise in Oromyofunctional Disorders. As co-founders of the Dentofacial Institute and international speakers, Dr Elina Castro Blairs and Nada dedicate most of their professional time to promoting airway and sleep awareness and the impact of these on Dentofacial growth and development, particularly focusing on early interceptive facial orthopaedics. Nada’s collaboration with dental professionals and multidisciplinary approach in the care of her patients seeks to address the root cause of many of the communication and feeding difficulties children present with.