Many people do not realize just how important it is to breathe through your nose—particularly for your oral health! In fact, if you believe you might be breathing primarily through your mouth, we highly recommend visiting Manus Dental to address the issue. Why, you ask? Just consider these six surprising facts about mouth breathing!
- 1. If you breathe through the mouth, you’re likely experiencing these symptoms.
Not sure if you might be breathing from your mouth when you sleep? There are a few telltale signs that could help you pinpoint the issue. These symptoms include chronic bad breath (halitosis), dry lips, snoring, and crowded teeth. You may also experience colds, ear infections, and sinus infections with increased regularity. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you may want to discuss them with your dentist.
- 2. Your saliva production might be affected.
There are a number of reasons why breathing through your nose as opposed to your mouth is beneficial to your health. One of these reasons is that the air you breathe in is moisturized when it goes through the sinuses, a process that does not occur as you breathe through your mouth. This can impact the pH level of your saliva (and even your entire body!). This means that, by breathing only through your mouth, your saliva becomes more acidic, which can have a big impact on your oral health. It can dry out your mouth, corrode your teeth, and make producing more saliva difficult (so you’ll have difficulty washing away harmful bacteria).
- 3. Mouth breathing can increase your risk of gum disease.
As mentioned above, breathing only from your mouth can make it difficult to produce saliva, which plays a major role in washing away harmful bacteria. This bacteria, in turn, can inflame the gums—an infection known as gingivitis which, if left untreated, can lead to gum disease. All in all, gum disease can be very harmful to your overall health, and it is important to do everything possible to avoid it!
- 4. Your risk of tooth decay is also increased.
If you breathe mostly through your mouth, you may be at greater risk for dental decay. As described above, your mouth becomes more acidic when you do not moisturize the air through the sinuses, and it quickly dries out your mouth and makes it more difficult to produce saliva. Unfortunately, dry teeth are more susceptible to decay as the saliva cannot wash away the harmful bacteria that erode your enamel. Enamel does not grow back, so it is critical to protect it as much as possible!
- 5. If your child breathes through their mouth, it could cause issues down the road.
For most adults, it is clear that the body is designed to allow us to breathe primarily through our nasal cavity. However, young children are still developing as they grow. Therefore, if your child breathes primarily through the mouth, their posture will develop in order to better facilitate breathing through this airway. This can cause a number of developmental changes if left untreated, including their face to become long and narrow, their lips to change shape, and their nose to become flat and small. You might also anticipate your child’s teeth to become crooked and their smile to become more gummy.
- 6. Your dentist at Manus Dental can help!
It is often the case that your dentist will be the first to determine that you’re breathing primarily through the mouth. This can be accomplished by a simple routine exam, in which we might notice swollen tonsils, gum infections, or dental decay. We will treat your symptoms and help you to avoid this issue in the future.
Do you think you may be mouth breathing in your sleep? Call Manus Dental right away to schedule an appointment!