We breathe without thinking about it, thanks to complex systems in the brain sending signals to our lungs. Few people stop to think about how they breathe: through the mouth or nose.
Is there a difference in the quality of each method? After all, either way provides oxygen to the lungs, heart, brain, etc. Does it matter if your mouth is open or closed? Web pages are devoted to the topic, so it’s obviously not a simple question to answer.
When you exercise strenuously, your mouth is probably open. Getting adequate air through the nose is difficult whereas you can gulp down huge mouthfuls of air through your mouth. Sleeping with an open mouth, however, or conducting daily routines this way could be a sign that your nose is blocked. If you do not have a cold, you should try to find out why nose-breathing poses a problem.
Many health care practitioners advocate nose breathing for a variety of reasons. Nostrils contain hairs which filter air searching for bugs, so you sneeze instead of ingesting them. Your nose was made for breathing, and inhalation through this route could actually prevent conditions like asthma.
Negatives and Positives of Mouth Breathing
Germs floating through the air in their billions go into your mouth if it is open, but there are none of those fine hairs present to catch and expel them. Your oral health could be suffering too as you swallow bacteria. Mouth breathing apparently leaves a person vulnerable to over-breathing which leads to dizziness and fainting. Meanwhile, you might not be oxygenating your blood effectively.
However, if your nose is blocked, the same can also be true: you can’t get enough air and you feel dizzy. During a tough workout, you need that extra air. But are you breathing from the chest or the diaphragm? Mouth breathing is frequently shallow and ineffective.
Negatives and Positives of Nose Breathing
Yoga practitioners promote nose breathing because you are encouraged to breathe more deeply, drawing air from the diaphragm. This enables you to provide a full supply of oxygen to your body with every breath. Breathing coaches encourage a slow and steady rhythm: in through the nose, possibly out through the mouth or nose.
During certain yoga moves, especially when your head is down, the nose feels blocked. As long as you maintain a steady rhythm it’s fine to open your mouth. There are several breathing styles in yoga. Learn to find tranquility through your breath with that gentle, even rhythm. Push out air in a long, steady exhale through your mouth to restore regularity when you are wheezy.
Breathing through Exertion
Trainers advocate a different type of breathing for their clients. When they lift weights the pattern is this: in through the nose then out through the mouth during exertion. At the most difficult part of a repetition, breathing out releases tension and also encourages the client not to hold her breath when a move is burning her muscles.
She is getting rid of carbon dioxide before restoring her system with more oxygen. Many people hold their breath during an abdominal crunch or lat pull down. Muscles need oxygen in steady supply, not a rhythm of denial and over-compensation.
Breathing throughout Life
There is no single right way to breathe. Singers breathe through the mouth when there is little time to breathe between notes. People with allergies breathe through their mouths because they can’t get air any other way. Snorers eventually open their mouths: the septum is deviated and blocking air. The most important advice you can take is to breathe fully and deeply any way you can and not to stop until you die.