Mouth Breathing is unhealthy condition many of us, including myself, don't even realize we are doing. Mouth breathing occurs when the tongue is low in the mouth (picture on left, you can see the tongue behind the front teeth), dropping the lower jaw open to breathe. Some it begins when congested and others when they exercise or even unconsciously during sleep. From the picture above you can see the profile of a mouth breather. When the tongue is low in the mouth, especially during our development years, our whole cranial structure adapts and changes. Some facial features are long face, droopy eyes, dark circles under eyes, open lips, head tilting forward, chin receding, upper lip short. Unfortunately you can visit any school and see a majority of these profiles in the hallways. Once I became aware of orofacial myofunctional disorders I began to recognize these in the settings I was working in, schools. Not only does mouth breathing affect our facial features as an adult or child but it also affects our overall health.
Sleeping with your mouth open disrupts your sleep and you are unable to reach the deep sleep needed for your biochemical recharge that happens during that stage of sleep. Mouth breathing creates a dry environment in your mouth altering the bacteria and oral conditions become more susceptible to disease. Not only does mouth breathing alter your sleep and leave you feeling unrested, tired, and needing a nap it also affects learning and functioning during the day. Children especially are affected by this and act out during class or classified as being hyperactive. If any child is diagnosed with ADD or ADHD looking at and analyzing their sleep is crucial for them to get the correct treatment they need. Bed wetting until later in age is a key sign that sleep is being disrupted.
How does mouth breathing get corrected with myofunctional therapy? After a full evaluation for my clients, my customized plan will include altering breathing patterns and focus on nasal breathing only to facilitate healthier breathing habits. This is done by a series of specific exercises to improve and strengthen orofacial muscles around the face, lips, and tongue. Retraining and toning muscles help establish the correct pattern needed to function healthy and gives you your energy back!
Contact me today for your FREE 30-minute assessment!! Anywhere you are with your mobile device we can meet, using ZOOM as the video platform.