Why Being a “Mouth-Breather” Is Bad For You
No one has paid much attention, but 50 years of scientific research suggests a multitude of problems associated with mouth breathing.
Why it matters: How we breathe has a major impact on our health. Breathing through your nose allows your lungs to extract oxygen efficiently.
- Mouth breathing can affect your skeletal structure, leading to sleep apnea, snoring, and possibly asthma or allergies.
- Breathing incorrectly can also result in breathing too much. This causes your adrenaline and blood sugar to spike.
Background: Author James Nestor was living in San Francisco and experiencing chronic pneumonia and bronchitis, year after year. A doctor friend suggested he try a breathing class. The experience didn’t go well, but he filed it away. Several years later, he met some free divers. These are people who through the power of will have learned to hold their breath for six to eight minutes at a time. That’s when he decided to take another look at breathing. The result was his book, “Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art”.
Breathing is the foundation of many different sports and martial arts, especially jiu jitsu. And a lot of the importance of proper breathing has been forgotten.
- To train athletes to breathe through their noses, coaches back in the 1950s used to have runners take a mouthful of water before running around the track, and then have the runners spit back out the same amount into a cup.
Yes, and there’s a lot of science indicating how dangerous constantly breathing through your mouth is. It’s estimated about 25, and even as high as 50 percent, of the population habitually breathes through their mouths. Most are unaware of the neurological and respiratory problems this causes.
- The Chief of Rhinology at Stanford says our nose is the most amazing organ no one ever talks about.
- There’s no school in the US dedicated to studying the nose and its effects on our health.
- Researchers are frustrated at seeing so many chronic conditions tied to mouth breathing.
Bottom line: There are innumerable benefits to nasal breathing. Many chronic conditions could be improved upon, or outright cured, by switching the pathway in which you breathe.
This post first appeared on Social Leverage.