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Nose Breathing vs Mouth Breathing: Which Breathing Technique is Best For Your Oral Health?

The Tongue Tie & Sleep Institute
Nose Breathing vs Mouth Breathing:  Which Breathing Technique is Best For  Your Oral Health?

Have you ever taken the time to notice if you breathe through your mouth or nose? Breathing comes naturally to us, and we mostly do not think twice about it. Well, now it is time to take a step back and re-evaluate how your breathing affects your whole body.

How do you breathe? Which breathing technique is better?

In this article, we'll check the difference between nasal and mouth breathing and help you find the right breathing technique that is best for your oral health.

A] Difference Between Nose Breathing and Mouth Breathing

The nose and mouth are two pathways that lead to the throat. They are both capable of carrying oxygen to your lungs. However, there are some vital differences between nasal breathing and mouth breathing. 

1. Nasal (nose) Breathing 

When a person breathes through their nose, the hair acts as a filter and prevents dust mites, allergens and pollen from entering the lungs. It also humidifies the air you breathe in, making it easier for your lungs to use it. The nose also releases nitric oxide, which helps widen blood vessels. This ensures better oxygen circulation throughout the body.  

2. Mouth Breathing

Although you can breathe through your mouth, it is not one of its primary functions. The main function of the mouth is to help you eat, drink, and talk. While mouth breathing, the air you swallow isn’t filtered or humidified. Also, it only reaches the upper part of the lungs and not the lower lungs, which has parasympathetic nerve receptors responsible for calming the mind and body. 

Since the air reaches only the upper lungs, it could lead to hyperventilation, triggering the sympathetic nerve receptors resulting in a fight or flight reaction. 

Breathing through your mouth could cause your mouth to lose moisture leading to dry mouth, increasing the risks of asthma, allergic reactions to pollen, tooth decay, gum inflammation, teeth or jaw abnormalities, bad breath, sleep apnea, and so on. 

B] How Does Mouth Breathing Affect Your Oral Health?

Mouth breathing is connected to numerous oral health conditions. Breathing through the mouth puts more stress on the salivary glands, which has to overwork to produce extra saliva to keep the mouth hydrated. 

When you consume food, oral bacteria produce plaque that is acidic, sticky and potentially damaging to dental structures. Saliva neutralises the acidic effect on teeth protecting the enamel from deteriorating. As mouth breathing gradually reduces the regeneration of saliva in the mouth, there is an increased risk of tooth decay (cavities), gum disease, and halitosis (bad breath).

On the other hand, mouth breathing causes the jaw to remain partially open for extended periods leading to strain on the jaw points. These jaw tissues can become extremely painful and may require orthodontic treatment, oral surgery, or other correction methods.

Final Note 

Nasal breathing is the best breathing technique for your oral health, and it keeps your mouth functioning properly. Mouth breathing may not seem like a serious problem, but it can cause issues like sleep apnea in the long run. 

To learn more about breathing, check out this blog. Also, if you are facing problems with mouth breathing, consult with a specialist at the earliest.

The Tongue Tie & Sleep Institute
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