Many people don’t realise that mouth breathing is a complex health concern.
Breathing through the mouth all the time, including when you are sleeping, can lead to problems. In children, mouth breathing can cause crooked teeth, facial deformities, or poor growth. In adults, chronic mouth breathing can cause bad breath, gum disease, and can worsen symptoms of other illnesses. It is much better to breathe through your nose.
How to Tell if You Are a Mouth Breather
You may not realise that you are breathing through your mouth instead of your nose, especially while you sleep.
People who breathe through the mouth at night may have the following symptoms:
- dry mouth
- bad breath (halitosis)
- waking up tired and irritable
- chronic fatigue
- brain fog
- dark circles under the eyes
Signs That Your Child is a Mouth Breather
It is important for parents to look for signs of mouth breathing in children. A child may not be able to communicate their symptoms. Like adults, children who are mouth breathers will breathe with their mouth open and will snore at night.
Children who breathe through their mouths for most of the day may also have the following symptoms:
- slower than normal growth rate
- increased crying episodes at night
- large tonsils
- dry, cracked lips
- problems concentrating at school etc.
- daytime sleepiness
What You Can Do About Mouth Breathing
Monitor yourself or your child for mouth breathing. Having an open mouth resting posture can be a sign of mouth breathing. How often does it occur during the day?
Speak to a health professional
Consider talking to a dentist or a doctor who specialises in breathing and sleep. Your dentist can help you determine the best option for you or your child, and how to get started with changing from mouth breathing to nose breathing.
Use saline nasal mists and sprays
Using saline nasal mists and sprays and nasal decongestants or allergy reliever medications at the first sign of allergy or cold symptoms and for long flights can help reduce your natural response to mouth breathing.
Sleep with your head elevated
By sleeping with your head elevated, you will open the airways and promote nasal breathing naturally.
Practice breathing through your nose
Consciously practicing breathing through your nose during the day to help force yourself into a habit of nose breathing.
Keep your house clean and free of allergens, try installing air filters in your heat and air conditioning systems to prevent the spread of allergens in your house. It also makes nose breathing more comfortable.
Early detection and treatment is best!
When you treat mouth breathing early it can reduce or prevent the negative effect on facial and dental development. If you have any concerns, please contact our dentists at Dental Care Professionals.Leave a reply →