Miami and Coral Gables, FL
Staying active is crucial to maintaining good health. Many people would rather play a sport than spend time working out on their own in the gym. It doesn’t matter if you’re a weekend warrior, you compete for your school or even if you’re a professional athlete… you can improve your performance by closing your mouth. Allow your dentists at Miami Designer Smiles to explain how breathing with a closed mouth can raise your game.
Good performance starts with proper breathing techniques
It’s true. The way you breathe matters just as much, if not more so than any other aspect of your lifestyle and training regimen: nutrition, hydration, sleep, workouts, and more. So what’s the right way to breathe? Ideally, you should breathe with the mouth closed, inhaling, and exhaling through the nose. Breathing nasally is a slower process, and the breaths themselves are more shallow. This gives the entire lung time to inflate, while also increasing the oxygenation of the blood and overall oxygen levels in the body.
Nitric oxide: it’s a good thing
Nasal breathing also increases your production of nitric oxide by as much as 25 percent. There are several health benefits that nitric oxide provides, including better regulation of blood pressure, lower levels of inflammation throughout the body, getting better sleep, and assisting the function of the immune system. Other advantages to higher quantities of nitric oxide correlate directly to improved athletic performance: improved cognitive function, specifically related to memory and learning; better endurance; and greater physical strength.
The consequences of mouth breathing can go far beyond impacting your athletic performance
If you breathe regularly through the mouth, there can be negative effects that damage more than your game. For children and adolescents who mouth breathe, this can alter the development of the upper jaw, affecting the ability to swallow, the proper eruption of permanent teeth, and lead to the formation of negative habits such as tongue thrust. An underdeveloped jaw can lead to changes in your appearance: a longer face, the hindered growth of the eye sockets, narrow dental arches, and more. Furthermore, mouth breathing increases your risk of developing either obstructive sleep apnea or temporomandibular joint disorder—two serious medical conditions.
How your dentist can help you change the way you breathe
You can try a couple of different methods on your own to change your breathing. Take a small sip of water, then hold it in your mouth while training, basically forcing you to breathe through the nose. You also can make a conscious effort to press your tongue gently against the roof of your mouth a few times each day. This encourages the ideal oral resting posture—with the tongue against the upper palate, while the lips and teeth stay closed.
At Miami Designer Smiles, we also offer myofunctional therapy, which consists of prescribing the patient with a series of simple, painless exercises that work the muscles of the orofacial system. Our staff includes Brenda Largaespada, a trained myofunctional therapist. She can help you learn how to breathe through your nose and use proper oral resting posture. Begin enjoying the benefits of nasal breathing—including improved athletic performance. Ready to find out more? Call our office to schedule a consultation today by calling (305) 595-4616 if you live in the areas of Miami and Coral Gables in south Florida.