Mouth Breathing: Why you need to pay attention

Mouth Breathing: Why you need to pay attention

Mouth breathing

Mouth breathing can cause several serious health conditions that go unnoticed for years. It can impact energy levels and concentration and can even cause bad breath. Research shows that when we breathe through our mouths, there is an increase in oxygen in the prefrontal cortex of the brain. This part of the brain affects personality expression, decision making and social behaviour.

Mouth breathing symptoms

Some of the following factors or disorders are associated with mouth breathing:

  • Dry mouth
  • Bad breath
  • Increased throat and ear infection
  • Underdeveloped airway and oral cavity
  • Sleep disorders, e.g. waking in the night
  • Chewing abnormalities
  • Poor concentration

Causes of Mouth breathing

Reasons for being a mouth breather can be psychological and physiological. They can include;

  • Chronic colds and sinus infections
  • Enlarged tonsils
  • Obstructed airways, e.g. deviated septum, polyps
  • Asthma
  • Tongue tie
  • Previous thumb-sucking habit

Why is breathing well important?

At SHDC, we consider breathing well to be one of the fundamental pillars of good health. Breathing well means breathing through your nose, approximately 8-12 breaths/minute, using your diaphragm. When we breathe well, carbon dioxide and oxygen levels balance in the body. Dysfunctional breathing makes the body more acidic and prone to infection and dental problems.

What can you do about it?

The first step is having your airways examined, something that is a large part of our health assessment at SHDC. From there, a professional can assess the best treatment approach for you. This may mean myofunctional therapy using appliances and exercises for tongue and muscle retraining. Another treatment approach may be breathing retraining. Or it may be the use of splints and appliances.