An Embouchure Aid for Wind Musicians
Name: Giuseppe Sapienza Main Subject: Classical Clarinet Research Supervisor: Wouter Verschuren Title of the Research: An Embouchure Aid for Wind Musicians Research Question: Assessing whether playing a wind instrument can change tooth position and investigate the effectiveness of an embouchure support device to provide dental support. This study was inspired by the author's personal experience of discomfort and pain while playing the clarinet and aims to investigate the potential relationship between dental health and clarinet playing, specifically the impact of the mouthpiece on tooth position and stability. A literature review of previous studies on the connection between wind instruments and tooth movement was conducted. The author collaborated with two professional dentists to develop an embouchure support device called PlayAid. The device was prototyped and tested by the author with a positive outcome. The study found a correlation between playing the clarinet and an increased risk of dental problems, including tooth mobility, erosion, and discomfort. The upper incisors were the most commonly affected teeth. The literature review showed that playing wind instruments can cause changes in tooth position, specifically an increase in overjet. Based on the results of this study, it can be concluded that an embouchure support device, like PlayAid, can effectively provide dental support for players with dental problems but also for those who exclusively seek better embouchure comfort and sound quality. The chosen format of a presentation will be a public exposition of the results of the research with a live demonstration of PlayAid.