The Serious Health Effects of Mouth Breathing
Teeth and braces:
- If your mouth is open, your braces will take longer and your treatment will be much more challenging for your orthodontist.
- The spaces between your teeth will be more difficult to close and the stability of the alignment of your teeth will be compromised once your braces are removed.
- This means you are likely to experience orthodontic relapse and you may need braces again in the future.
- When children have an open mouth, they are more likely to struggle with certain speech sounds.
- The most commonly associated speech problem is a lisp, or the inability to say “S” sounds correctly. Speech is affected because when you have an open mouth, you also have what we refer to as a “tongue thrust swallowing pattern.”
- This type of swallowing pattern causes the tongue to protrude, or push forward during speaking and swallowing.
Facial growth and development:
- t’s important to realize that growth is a very powerful force. A child with an open mouth will very likely grow into an adult with flatter facial features, less prominent cheekbones, a longer face, droopier eyes and lower facial muscle tone, a narrower palate, and even a smaller lower jaw in most cases.
- By closing the mouth and breathing through the nose, these negative growth patterns can be prevented.
Sleep and oxygen:
- When adults and children breathe through their mouths during the day, chances are very high that they also breathe through their mouths all night long as well.
- Mouth breathing at night, combined with an obstructed airway, are two symptoms directly connected to sleep apnea and altered levels of carbon dioxide and oxygen in the bloodstream.
- When less oxygen is able to reach the brain, learning and the ability to focus at school becomes a problem for many children. In adults, chronic fatigue, tiredness, and brain fog are common symptoms related to these issues.