? asked in HealthDental · 6 years ago

Does MARA ortho appliance affect playing the clarinet?

I currently have a stupid MARA appliance in my mouth and I have to choose an instrument for school. I love playing woodwind instruments and I don't know whether it will effect the playing of a clarinet

1 Answer

  • 6 years ago
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    This video is all I know about the MARA ortho appliance, but seeing that nobody else seems to know anything about it, I'll try to help.

    I do play clarinet, so I can teach you the embouchure to see if you can do it, and I think you'll be able to. Stand in front of a mirror, put your finger in front of your face, and blow on it. Bring the corners of your mouth in to channel the air and slightly roll your bottom lip over your teeth. You want your lip to cover your bottom teeth so that if you were actually playing the clarinet your teeth wouldn't be touching the reed. Your chin should look flat; if it's not, bring your corners in tighter and make sure you have only a little bit of your lower lip covering your bottom teeth. Everything should be tight. If you need further help with this, leave a detailed comment with what you can't do and I can help.

    The next issue would be how your jaw lines up with the clarinet mouthpiece in your mouth. Your appliance will definitely help you out in the long run because it's moving your jaw into a better position to play clarinet. For now, as long as you can hold your jaw in the forward position it is trying to move it into while keeping your mouth slightly open to allow for the clarinet mouthpiece to sit in it, I think you'll be fine, and by the looks of the video, I can pretty much guarantee you'll be able to do it. You'll just have to adjust the clarinet angle to compensate for your added jaw pressure. By this I mean that you might have to have the bell (bottom) of your clarinet further past your knees than normally recommended so that you can get a sound out.

    If you go try out instruments and someone tells you that you won't ever be able to play clarinet, tell them that you will be able to and if you can't figure it out ask them to help you adjust the clarinet angle. When you move the angle of the clarinet, don't move your head; just slowly bring the bottom of the instrument forward and back until you can get a sound out. If it's too close to your body, you're closing the reed off because there's too much pressure from your lower lip, which is caused by the position of your jaw. Honestly, if they tell you you won't be able to do it, they probably just don't want to have to deal with it.

    As for different instruments, I think that there will be an abnormal adjustment you'd have to make for each one except percussion, so if you want to play clarinet, play clarinet. With brass you'd also have to have a slightly different horn angle and with the rest of the woodwinds your head angle would change too.

    This is all assuming you have to change something. There is a chance that you'll go to try instruments and it won't even make a difference. You just have to go try it out and see. If this appliance is anything like braces, playing an instrument might make it rub against the inside of your mouth, so apply wax to it.

    I hope this helps, and if you need extra help, just leave a comment and I'll see what I can do. Just don't give up; there's always a solution.

    Source(s): Clarinetist and beginning band teacher
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