You may not think much about how you breathe since it’s automatic, but there can be some major impacts to your body based on whether you are routinely breathing through your nose or your mouth. Mouth breathing carries some undesirable health issues with it, just as there are some positive benefits of nasal breathing.
Nasal breathing vs mouth breathing
Breathing through your mouth tends to dry out the tongue, gums, and teeth, acid buildup in the mouth does not get reduced, and that can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. Since the bacterial population in the mouth is significantly altered by mouth breathing, it’s also very possible that bad breath will result.
Nasal breathing keeps air in your lungs longer than mouth breathing, and provides up to 20% more oxygen in your bloodstream at any given time. Nasal breathing also warms the air by as much as 40 degrees before it gets to the lungs, this is especially important in cold weather. The majority of bacteria and germs are filtered out of incoming air by your nose before the air is passed on to the lungs, and this is an important health benefit.
Do you get more oxygen breathing through your nose?
The simple answer to this is yes. And there’s a good reason
for it. When you breathe through your nose, there’s about 50% more air resistance imposed on the incoming air stream, as compared to mouth breathing. This results in an increase of oxygen intake which amounts to somewhere between 10 and 20%, which is quite a significant difference.
The truth is, there are many reasons why nasal breathing is much better for you than mouth breathing. Here’s one last benefit that should help to convince you. In 1931, a scientist named Otto Warburg
won a Nobel Prize for his work which clearly demonstrated that only oxygen-starved cells in the body mutate into cancerous cells. Nasal breathing has a much better chance of supplying needed oxygen to the cells of the body, whereas mouth breathing is less efficient and can decrease the level of oxygen supplied to the body’s cells.