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The Application Of Tongue Endurance Measures To Functional Dining

Stephanie Kays, JoAnne Robbins

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Abstract While tongue strength has been shown to be critical for safe swallowing, measures of tongue endurance may be more functional, given that dining requires multiple swallows performed over a period of time. Recent findings demonstrate that the act of eating a meal reduces tongue endurance in both young and older adults, but young adults tend to have higher baseline endurance measures, suggesting that older adults present with reduced reserve to safely complete a meal with minimal effort. Furthermore, observed changes in tongue endurance after dining vary with respect to anatomic tongue location, age, and gender. Evidence from studies of limb muscle endurance is utilized to discuss these findings.