ad collaborative post // Many people invest a lot of time and money into improving various aspects of their health. Whether you’re invested in losing weight, building muscle, building stamina, sleeping better, or having more energy and better focus, looking after our health is often the top priority for many people.
However, what you might not realize is that your breathing can impact all of this. Breathing is something that we do all the time, yet we often barely even notice it. Bad breathing habits can have some negative consequences for your health and well-being. Here’s why – and how – to work on your breathing.
Why is Good Breathing Important?
Our life begins and ends with a breath; we can live without food or water for days, but no human could last for more than a few minutes without sufficient air. We take up to a thousand breaths each hour and around 10-20kg of air passes in and out of our lungs daily. It’s clear to see that breathing is fundamental to life.
Poor breathing habits can impact your health and well-being in various ways. Breathing through your mouth rather than your nose can cause various health problems, particularly if you tend to breathe through your mouth when sleeping. Mouth breathing in children can cause problems like poor growth, misaligned teeth and facial deformities. Adults who breathe through their mouths at night often suffer from bad breath and gum disease, along with a higher risk of serious conditions like stroke and heart disease.
The Risks of Mouth Breathing
You might not think twice about breathing through your mouth rather than your nose, but there are many risks involved that you may not be aware of. Firstly, breathing through your mouth can lead to conditions like gum disease, bad breath, and even infections in your throat and ears. This is caused by the mouth becoming very dry when you breathe through it, leaving your saliva unable to wash away the bacteria.
More seriously, mouth breathing can lead to a reduced oxygen concentration in your blood, which can lead to health problems like high blood pressure, heart disease, and heart failure. Research also suggests that mouth breathing can also impair lung function and worsen the symptoms of some respiratory diseases like asthma.
Who is More Likely to Have Bad Breathing Habits?
Anybody can develop poor breathing habits for various reasons. Breathing through the mouth rather than the nose is often more common in people who suffer from sinus infections, asthma, hay fever, and chronic allergies. Mental health problems like anxiety or panic disorder can also lead to breathing problems, where people may take short, rapid breaths or hold their breath for a long period of time.
How to Work on Your Breathing
How to work on your breathing will depend on the problem that you are experiencing. If your nose is stuffy every evening then it’s likely that you breathe through your mouth at night, especially if you always tend to wake up with a dry mouth and sore throat. Snoring strips can help you breathe easier through your nose at night, along with essential oils that clear your sinuses like peppermint or eucalyptus.
If you breathe rapidly or hold your breath often as a result of your mental health, deep breathing exercises can help. Breathing in deeply through your nose, holding it for a couple of seconds, and then blowing out gently through your mouth will help to calm your body and mind, slow your heart rate, and help you breathe more normally again.
Our breath is vital to our life, yet many of us don’t pay a lot of attention to our breathing. Working on your breathing habits can improve your mental and physical health in many different ways.