Mouth Breathing
Mouth Breathing Therapy
Exploring Problems with Mouth Breathing
myofunctional therapy mouth breathing

Most of us never really think about how we breathe. We figure as long as we’re getting air into our bodies, we’re good to go. The fact is, there’s a big difference between mouth breathing and nasal breathing, and each has a different effect on our health and well-being.

When you breathe through your mouth, you can be setting the stage for a variety of health problems, which we’ll look at in a moment. Nasal breathing, on the other hand, supports health in several very important ways:

  • The nose is a far more efficient filter of pollutants than the mouth.

  • Nasal breathing stimulates the release of nitric oxide, which is produced in our sinuses. Nitric oxide has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and enhances the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain and throughout the body.

  • When drawn through the nose, air is heated and hydrated, which is good for the lungs.

  • Breathing through the nose helps to prevent the negative side effects of over-breathing.


A few of the documented problems with mouth breathing


My patients are often shocked to discover how chronic mouth breathing can affect their health. Fortunately, mouth breathing is a habit that can be unlearned, and that’s what we focus on in myofunctional therapy. Here are 13 of the many problems that can arise in those who breathe predominantly through their mouths.

  1. Increase in cavities, gingivitis and gum disease

  2. Sinus problems and headaches

  3. More bacteria and plaque on the tongue, resulting in bad breath

  4. Clenching and grinding the teeth, and pain resulting from TMJ

  5. Poor upper jaw development

  6. Crooked teeth and greater likelihood of teeth reverting to their original state after wearing braces

  7. Snoring/sleep disturbance/exacerbation of sleep apnea symptoms

  8. Stomach gas, upset stomach and acid reflux

  9. Dry lips/cracked lips/lip-licking habit

  10. Excess noise made while eating and breathing

  11. Improper exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide

  12. Problems with speech, swallowing and chewing due to improper use of the tongue and facial muscles

  13. Swelling of the tonsils and adenoids, further restricting the airway


How myofunctional therapy can help problems with mouth breathing

Before initiating therapy to remove the habit of mouth breathing, patients should have their nasal cavities cleared by a doctor or an allergist. My therapy involves pinpointing the dysfunctional muscles that are contributing to chronic mouth breathing. Typically these muscles include:

  • those in the upper lip, which help to keep the lips together

  • those in the tongue, which in a weakened state cause the tongue to rest on the floor of the mouth while encouraging forward head posture


Myofunctional therapy addresses problems with mouth breathing through targeted muscle-strengthening exercises that are individualized for each patient’s needs. We will work together to eliminate the habit of an open mouth, to the new healthy habit of keeping the lips closed

Schedule A Complimentary 20 Minute
Informational Phone Call
Shelly Azevedo
Myofunctional Therapist

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