We hope that this finds you well and in good health, as we continue to forge through these strange, uncertain, and scary times that is the Coronavirus pandemic that we’re all facing. By this point you’ve undoubtedly been inundated with information, sometimes conflicting information, and all-around a flood of “what to do’s”. We’re right there with you and we understand that this cacophony of best practices and news reports can certainly be draining. With that, please know that it is with great importance that we share this post with you.
The precautionary measures that we’re all being asked to take are all certainly beneficial in slowing the spread of COVID-19, however there are advisory topics such as fitness, diet and exercise, and breathing (our favorite) that haven’t been touched on nearly enough. All of these factors are also extremely important in combating COVID-19 and any illness. Within this blog we are going to cover why nasal breathing is vital for your safety and protection.
To maintain good health and receive the highest supply of oxygen for your body, breathing through your nose is imperative. Through research and our experience, it's known that many people through their mouth without even realizing it. Mouth breathing leads to hyperventilation, lowers the circulation of blood flow, and causes our airways to vasoconstrict. Over time mouth breathing will have a detrimental effect on systemic health such as hypertension, asthma, allergies, obstructive sleep apnea, and anxiety. In this time of combating the Coronavirus, if one breathes through their mouth they are increasing their risk of intaking airborne contaminants within their body.
Nasal breathing can protect the body from such contaminants, as your nasal passages filter out impurities, warm, and moisten the air before it enters the rest of the body. This in turn helps to reduce the likelihood of developing illnesses, including contraction of the Coronavirus.
Our bodies produce a signaling molecule called Nitric Oxide (NO) in our nose and paranasal sinuses. NO is responsible for so many things in our body!
-It is a vasodilator that lowers blood pressure and makes it easier for blood to flow to our organs.
-It enhances our ability for learning and memory
-It regulates bladder function, erectile function, and respiration
-It has an anti-inflammatory action in blood vessels
-It decreases blood clotting and obstruction in arteries
-It’s especially relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic as it plays a role in our immune defense by destructing parasitic organisms and viruses!
As an added bonus, nasal breathing can also assist in stress relief, as taking slow breaths in and out of the nose has a calming effect on the body by stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system. We all are living in a time of extreme stress and anxiety, to be able to naturally calm ourselves and improve our sleep is so important!
While reading this it’s very likely you paid attention to your breathing, and that’s great! We want people to take notice of how they breathe. If you mouth breathe or notice that your child is mouth breathing, please contact us at our sister-organization Untethered Airway Health and Tongue-Tie Center, as we are here to assist with any breathing-related issues.
Mouth breathing can have such an adverse effect on the body, and we don’t to see anyone suffer when such a delicate change can be made. To focus on correcting mouth breathing, we suggest taking time during a relaxing part of your day to sit down and cognitively breathing through your nose, intentionally keeping your mouth sealed shut. Practicing this regularly can be a great start, and you’ll also be able to take note of the calming effect that this has. In the time that we’re in, we can all certainly use some extra calm that right now.
To learn more about proper breathing techniques and airway health, schedule a consultation with our team by calling 414-935-8460. We wish you continued health and safety, which includes better breathing!
Dr. Meggie Graham