Breathing is a natural behavior that most of us do not even pay attention to. We breathe in oxygen and exhale out carbon dioxide; surely nothing could be easier than breathing! But this is not as simple as it seems to be. In some cases, breathing in and out happens through the mouth instead of the nose, resulting in a condition called mouth breathing. Vigorous exercise or a stuffy nose can temporarily cause mouth breathing, which resolves over time. Chronic mouth breathing, however, is a significant problem.
What causes mouth breathing?
Many illnesses and physical deformities can cause mouth breathing. Here are some of the common causes:
- Chronic nasal congestion
- Nasal septum deviation
- Tonsil enlargement
- Sleep Apnea
And many more…..
Why should you breathe through your nose?
The nose is an efficient filter that helps trap pollen, dust, and other environmental toxins present in the air. Moreover, the nostrils also moisten the air and prevent dry air from entering the lungs or bronchial passages. The nostrils also warm up the cold external air so that the lungs are supplied with air at a normal body temperature. Also, nostrils have smaller passages than mouth, which creates correct breathing equilibrium. This equilibrium is very important. When you breathe through your mouth, the arteries and vessels in your body will constrict in order to reach a balance, thereby decreasing oxygenation. Although there is more air inhaled through the mouth, the body is oxygen deprived.
As a myofunctional therapist, my goal is to reach the root of the problem and find the cause of mouth breathing. Then, I will help re-train the dysfunctional oral and facial muscles to help you get your nasal breathing back on track.
Health risks of mouth breathing
Chronic mouth breathing can lead to a number of health problems, including:
- Dry mouth
- Increased rate of gum disease and tooth decay
- Poor sleep and chronic fatigue
- Low oxygen levels resulting from mouth breathing, and the subsequent worsening of other health conditions, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and sleep apnea
- Changes in body posture (head forward, rounded shoulders)
During nose breathing, the tongue plasters the roof of the mouth, creating internal support for the upper jaw. However, during mouth breathing, the tongue is rests on the floor of the mouth, which then alters jaw development, facial appearance, teeth positioning, and development of the airways.
Mouth-breathing people are characterized by narrow palates, long faces, weak oral muscles, and smaller lower jaws. All these changes alter the way a person chews, swallows, drinks, and talks.
Mouth breathing very often goes hand in hand with tongue thrust, for improper tongue position in the mouth alters oral muscle formation, such that these muscles become weak and underdeveloped. Due to weak oral muscle tone, the tongue adopts new movements during swallowing, shifting forward and between the front teeth (tongue thrust).
How Does Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy Help?
As an Orofacial Myologist, I see my role as one of helping people “connect the dots” and achieve a healthy and productive life. My comprehensive online myofunctional therapies are designed to get to the root of the problem. I’ll be happy to help you re-pattern dysfunctional muscles and breathing behaviors in order that, together, we may facilitate a remarkable improvement in the quality of your life!
With convenient and customized online therapies, you can benefit from my programs from anywhere in the world.
Get in touch with me to learn how myofunctional therapy can change your life.
Book a free 30-minute consultation today!