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Can Mouth Breathing Cause Dental Problems?

Do you tend to breathe through your mouth rather than your nose? Health experts agree that you should breathe through your nose in ideal circumstances, especially if you want to preserve your oral health.

Occasionally, you might suffer from a stuffy nose that can block the nasal airways. Then, you may need to breathe through your mouth for a brief time. But if you breathe through your mouth often, including while you sleep, you may see damage accrue on your teeth and gums.

When you understand what mouth breathing can do to your dental health, you can feel more encouraged to kick this habit. Read on to learn about the impact that breathing through your mouth can have on your smile.

Can Mouth Breathing Cause Dental Problems

Oral Health Risks from Mouth Breathing

Many factors can lead to a habit of breathing through the mouth instead of the nose, and this behavior often forms during childhood. But if a child starts to breathe through their mouth chronically, their developing smiles may suffer.

This behavior can make the jaw and face shape change, making the palate become narrower and the teeth grow crooked or crowded. Dental misalignment and bite problems can make oral hygiene more difficult. And excess pressure from these concerns may lead to TMJ disorders or other chronic oral discomfort.

Adult dental patients can also face issues with their oral health from chronic mouth breathing. When you breathe through the mouth, the air introduced to the oral environment can make the mouth dry. Dry mouth will allow oral bacteria to spread more easily, which increases the risk of infections like gum disease.

As a result, you may see symptoms like bleeding, puffiness, and soreness in the gum tissue. If you contract gum disease, you cannot get rid of this infection on your own. Seek periodontal therapy from your dentist to treat gum disease before it causes serious damage to your smile. Eradicating risk factors like mouth breathing can help you avoid contracting this infection in the first place.

How to Stop Breathing Through Your Mouth

Pay attention to your breathing habits to learn if you have a mouth-breathing problem. Some medical factors like sinus issues or allergies may make it harder to breathe through your nose. Meet with a doctor to address these concerns and stop mouth breathing.

Sometimes, mouth breathing can happen due to dental problems like crowded or crooked teeth. Your dentist can evaluate your dental structure and help you align your teeth to fix these problems. A straighter smile can make it easier to breathe through the nose.

Many people may breathe through their mouths as they sleep. In this case, they are not conscious enough of the behavior to stop it. However, you can lower the risk of dental problems related to this habit when you prioritize your nighttime oral hygiene routine. Brush your teeth, floss, and consider using mouthwash to ensure you have a clean smile that can stay healthy despite other sleep habits.