Snorkeling is harmful to human health
Why mouth breathing is harmful to your health
Breathing through the mouth is bad for your teeth and can lead to serious health problems.
We try to inform every patient about the most important "food" that is needed for healthy teeth and a healthy body. If we look at the teeth, we can usually already tell whether someone is consuming enough of this "food".
Well, is it a vitamin ??? Or a mineral?
NO! It's the oxygen !!!
Oxygen is an elementary "food" for healthy teeth and a healthy body. When you hear "food", you probably don't think of oxygen at first. Oxygen is by far what we need most. You simply cannot live without oxygen.
And yet many of us live with a deficiency ... and all because of the way we breathe!
To find out if we are breathing properly, we need to control whether we are breathing through our nose or mouth. Nasal breathing is the way to provide us with maximum oxygen.
Let's look at the hallmarks of how mouth breathing manifests itself on our teeth, dentition, and oral health:
- Long, narrow face
- Narrow mouth
- High palate
- Crooked teeth
- "Gummy smile" (a lot of gums are visible when you smile)
- The frenum of the tongue is too short
Other signs of mouth breathing:
- Blocked sinuses
- Enlarged tonsils and polyps
- dry mouth after waking up
- sleep apnea
Why is mouth breathing so harmful?
The nasopharynx and sinuses are designed to prepare the air on its way to the lungs. They are used to filter, moisten and warm the air. In addition, they are supposed to bind pollen and bacteria, viruses and fungi with their "slime" and transport them out of the body with the airflow - as a first barrier of our immune system against the "bad guys".
The main way nasal breathing helps oxygen flow is through a gas called nitric oxide (NO). The key roles of nitric oxide in the body and the respiratory system have only just been identified.
Nitric oxide is produced in the sinuses by certain enzymes. They help to distribute the oxygen evenly in the body by regulating the "blood flow".
When nitric oxide mixes with the air we breathe on its way to the lungs, it increases arterial oxygen saturation and also reduces arterial blood pressure. In addition, nitric oxide is of great importance in the body's cells. It affects platelet function, the immune system, and the nervous system. It also plays an important role in homeostasis and mitochondrial function. It is also produced elsewhere in the body, but the largest contributor is the small amount that is transported through the nose to the lungs.
Mouth breathing does not release nitric oxide and all other advantages of nasal breathing are eliminated. On the contrary, cold, unfiltered (pollen) air, air containing bacteria directly hits our "body police" - the tonsils, which swell in the course of the "increased activation" and further narrow the nasopharynx. This starts a vicious circle ... because nasal breathing becomes increasingly difficult. A human survival mechanism now allows us to breathe more through the mouth when nasal breathing is obstructed, because the body needs oxygen, no matter what the cost!
How can I stop breathing through my mouth?
The tongue is a surprisingly good indicator of proper breathing. Correct tongue position is essential for proper palate and jaw growth and straight teeth, and it also keeps the airways open.
Correct tongue position contributes to oxygen supply and straight teeth in many ways.
This is done through:
1. The widening of the upper jaw through nasal breathing
2. Direct upward pressure on the palate
3. Opening of the airways (due to muscle connections to the soft palate, spine and skull)
4. Activation of the neuromuscular system that trains the airways to stay open even during sleep
One of the surest signs of mouth breathing is deep tongue. The tongue is held in a low, downward position to create space to breathe. Usually the tongue should be high up against the roof of the mouth, sealing the oral cavity.
Lowering the tongue position can lead to other functional problems, such as swallowing incorrectly. And what is the consequence of that? Unequal forces on the teeth which can lead to misaligned teeth. In the long run, this can result in poor jaw growth and inadequate facial development.
Why is mouth breathing so harmful?
High palates, long, narrow faces and misaligned teeth are often caused by breathing through the mouth. These are signs that the tongue is not providing adequate airway support. Inadequate teeth and jaw positions increase the risk of snoring and sleep apnea.
Breathing through the mouth and interrupting breathing while sleeping is not good for either of us. In adults, mouth breathing, snoring, and sleep apnea can lead to obstructive sleep apnea (OSAS), which is suspected to contribute to heart failure, high blood pressure, and Alzheimer's disease.
In children, interruptions in breathing during sleep can have serious effects on brain growth. Your brain needs uninterrupted periods of oxygenated sleep for renewal and regeneration. A lack of oxygen leads to damage. It is known that sleep apnea in children increases the risk of hyperactivity, ADHD, fatigue and poor concentration.
The signs of mouth breathing can often be seen in the first few months of life. The best way to ensure healthy brain, jaw and teeth development is to make sure your child is breathing properly. It may not be necessary to do anything else to avoid fixed braces and extensive orthodontics later.
Correct breathing in you and your child
As a reminder, correcting the way you breathe is one of the biggest factors influencing the dental health of you and your child. The easiest way to check your child's development is to see if your child often has their mouth open.
We have good news for you. Once the problem is identified, your and your child's breathing can be corrected for correct nasal breathing. Your general health and the health of your teeth will be extremely beneficial. It's an easy way to avoid fixed braces naturally.
Have you observed mouth breathing in yourself or your child?
Talk to us and make an appointment for a consultation!
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