Is mouth breathing bad for your health?

In human beings nasal passages perform multiple tasks, the air we breathe when it goes through the nasal passages gets warmed, humidified and filtered before it reaches our lungs. Dust, allergic items like pollen and other debris which may carry microbes are removed thereby acting as a natural filter and a first line of defence. We are deprived of these benefits when we breathe through our nose. Also nose performs the dual purpose of sensing smell which is totally lost when we breathe through our mouth.


What are the types of mouth breathing?

Mouth breathing can be classified into three types –

  1. Obstructive
  2. Habitual
  3. Anatomic

What causes mouth breathing?

There may be various causes for mouth breathing and it may vary from children to adults. The common causes of mouth breathing are as follows –

  1. Blocked sinuses
  2. Swollen tonsils or adenoids
  3. Deviated septum
  4. Obstruction of nostrils
  5. Facial irregularities
  6. Dental issues
  7. Allergies
  8. Chronic respiratory infections

Children or adults who breathe through their mouth chronically may be deprived of sleep which may cause long periods of fatigue, affecting studies and work. Prolonged mouth breathing may result in facial and dental abnormalities making matters worse. It is also noticed that mouth breathing may result in insufficient oxygen supply causing heart issues, high blood pressure, snoring and sleep apnea.

Hence it is highly advisable to visit an ENT doctor if you notice a prolonged period of mouth breathing. Often in kids, mouth breathing manifests as mouth odour, snoring and irritable behaviour due to insufficient sleep.

You can consult a doctor if your family members exhibit any of the following symptoms –

  1. Snoring
  2. Bad breath
  3. Dry mouth and hoarseness of voice
  4. Chronic fatigue and tiredness
  5. ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder)
  6. Nasal tone while speaking

Early detection always results in taking necessary corrective measures thereby preventing lasting damage and issues at school or work. Book an appointment with the ENT experts at Dr. Rao’s ENT to diagnose your mouth breathing issues.