Mouth breathing may not sound serious, but it can actually have a big impact on your health. Mouth breathing is usually caused by and related to the shape of your face, sinuses, and other genetic predispositions. It can, however, cause certain health issues specifically related to your oral hygiene. In this article, we’ll discuss mouth breathing and potential treatments.
Your nose: Why it’s better for breathing
Your nose is connected to your mouth. Whether you breath through your nose or mouth, any air you take in all ends up in the same place, your lungs. So why are dentists so worried about mouth breathing?
When you breathe through your nose, the air is “processed” before it enters your lungs. Your nose can make the air a little warmer or a little cooler depending on weather conditions. Furthermore, your nose is filled with hairs that help filter dust and extraneous particles from their air before it reaches your lungs. Your nose also humidifies the air, which your lungs also like. Lastly, if the air is filled with a toxic gas, your nose is much better at identifying it than your mouth.
How mouth breathing can impact your health
Mouth breathing wouldn’t be a huge issue if it didn’t dry out your mouth. However, dry mouth is associated with a number of negative health effects. When your mouth is producing saliva, the saliva breaks down all the extra stuff that’s been left between your teeth and those hard-to-reach places. When your mouth is dry, the food rots in your mouth causing plaque, tartar, gum disease, and eventually tooth loss.
Mouth breathing can change the physical structure of your face
Children who breathe through their mouth may develop a longer face than their peers. They may also show signs of droopy eyes, narrow nostrils, and other physical changes. If the mouth breathing is related to the physical structure of the child’s face, there may not be much that can be done to correct the issue, other than managing the symptoms with a humidifier or a CPAP machine. If there is an underlying condition causing the mouth breathing, a doctor will address that first.
Without intervention, mouth breathing can advance the rate of gum disease and tooth decay, so developing a way to deal with it should be a priority.
Talk to a Dentist Today
Peak Family Dental Care in Cottonwood is here to answer any questions about your own or your child’s mouth breathing, and ways we can either manage the symptoms or correct the underlying issue. Call today and we will discuss your options with you.