mouth-breather n. a stupid person; a moron, dolt, imbecile. Editorial Note: The original definition of mouth-breather referred to a person that, due to medical problems (usually with the sinuses or nose), was forced to breath via the mouth. This leaves the jaw hanging open at most times, which has a tendency to make a person look dopey or spacey. (source: Double-Tongued Dictionary)

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100 Responses

  1. Bob says:

    I’m not an expert on the health aspects of it, But I agree with Mark on the fact that you get alot more air through your mouth (and when you are used to that, You almost feel like you are slowly suffocateing when breathing through your nose).

      As for the ‘slack-jawed’ look…I dont think people can even tell my mouth is open when i breath through my mouth…I looked in the mirror and it looks closed, but its not, Its just barely open.(yes, it seems odd i’d get more breath this way then through my nose).

      Also, about the noise factor of Mouth-breathing, It seems louder to me to breath through my nose then mouth…When i breath through my mouth, I dont hear anything…But through my nose I hear it. Which probably means nothing, Its probably like that whole ‘not being able to smell your own oder real well’ thing.

  2. tanya says:

    Frustrating for those of us who do have a legitimate medical reason for mouth breathing.  I was born with a cleft palate, and although surgical techniques have advanced since I was a child, my repair surgeries left me without the ability to breathe through my nose.  Let me put it this way:  I cannot be intubated nasally (if I were ever in an emergency), because the nasal passages are far, far too small.

    Consequently, I breathe through my mouth; I cannot get sufficient air through my nose.  I can get a small amount of air through my nose and do try to do so.  However, I mostly breathe through my mouth.

    And for those of us who are “guilty” of mouth breathing, those of us who are aware of it and cannot change it DO often try our best to avoid that “slack-jawed” look.  You’ll often find my mouth barely open.

  3. Chelsea says:

    I am a mouth breather. I’ve had respiratory problems since I was an infant; I’ve been picked on because I am a mouth breather, even though my medical problems could not be helped. Making fun of mouth breathers is an excepted form of discrimination.

    To those who make fun of us because we look stupid:
    I am in the top of my class and next year I will be starting pre-med to become a neurosurgeon.

  4. Barbedwire says:

    If you’ve ever been around dead bodies in a tropical environment, eg a war zone, you quickly learn to breath to your mouth, for if you continued to breath through your nose the stench of decaying flesh will make you sick, very sick

  5. Arthur says:

    Good pt. Barbedwire, but for regular folks breathing through your mouth isnt a good thing.  I’ve struggled with anxiety for years and now looking back I’ve realised that as a child I was quite sickly and had a blocked nose alot of times, causing me to breathe thru my mouth.  Eventually, towards my late teens this became a huge problem as it encouraged hyperventilation and trapped alot of gas, plus what was stated above: it made me look like an idiot, esp. in photos.  A little after I made the decision to breathe only thru my nose, my anxiety and gas problems got so much better.  It just goes to prove the importance of breath in overall health and constitution.

  6. I might not spell that well just learned inglesh 4 to 6 years ago but when I was born my parents told me that the doctors said the reason i couldnt breath to my nose was cause my tonsels where too big and they had to be removed well I was just a new bron and my pareNTS had to wait till I was atleas 3 to 4…I guess thas how become a mouth breather MY FIRST YEARS of survival.well when the day came for the operation the day before a 4 old kid died in the operation and my parents took me out of the hospitaal in fear I might die too during the operation and I guess they just forget to try later when I was older are the fear I would die well I fu#$ing which the would had taking the fu@$ing chance to have it done and NOW Im adult 31 dealing with all kinds of crap man people never made fun of me .. I my self felt different my mouth was alittle open. you can bearly tell but now i got asthma or bronchitis one of the two all because my fuc@#ng parents didnt want to take the chance ..I guess you can say i have hidden anger towards my parents for doing this to me!!oh man im about to ,f.ing loose it sorry I apologise ‘‘I know they ment well but in away it fu$&ed; my life now.now i got walk around with a fREAKIN little canaster thinge I still breath to my mouth now is my fault for not have insurance to removed this over grown tonsels I apologise for my language I just like to express my full emotion at every level i had an xray done yesterday on my lungs because lately I couldnt walk 10 ft fealling tired turns out my lung are in normal shape for my age the doc said..I also found out i have alot of allergys and that what kik in the asthma or bronchitis ive jet to take a blood lab test to see what exactly is that i have right now i have bad cold and the fatigue is less after the antibiotic that im taking and in top of that when i was younger i smoked cigaret and that didnt help me i started at 14 and stoped at 20 and i did smoke some mariguana a after i quit tabacco i smoked pot once on a while like once month in made me relax and didnt affect my breathing in fact i thought it was helping me breath better WRONG! lol well i stoped that now and no i hate liquor now my hobby is collecting old school toys and selling them for more im hoping i can sell enough to get the operation tonsel removed and than maybe the brochitis or asthma will be less i know their is no cure for the two thaz scary anyway i think i said too much lol i got my chip of my shoulder even if i dont get a responce i feel better about my self I now know their are more like me and we should stick together and make a group that get funds to operate our   cituation thanks to who ever runs this site i really apreciate this …

  7. vebra says:

    I never even knew about this term until like a year ago, and then i didn’t even think about its meaning until like now.  No one ever said anything about it to me, even though I mostly breath through my mouth.  Now I’m like paranoid!

  8. Jane Burgess says:

    A 1997 study (located here at http://tinyurl.com/28zmyl) found that nasal symptoms cause mouth breathing and that mouth breathing causes nasal symptoms. Because one symptom causes another, a vicious cycle can develop. For example, some congestion leads to mild mouth breathing that can worsen the congestion that causes more severe mouth breathing.

    An Atlanta dentist posts some of the dental problems that can be created by persistent mouth-breathing here:
    http://www.atlantadentist.com/open_mouth_breathing.html

    The lungs are a primary source of our energy level. They extract oxygen from the air we breathe primarily on the exhale. Because the nostrils are smaller then the mouth, air exhaled through the nose creates back pressure when one exhales. It slows the air escape so the lungs have more time to extract oxygen from them. When there is proper oxygen-carbon dioxide exchange, the blood will maintain a balanced pH. If carbon dioxide is lost too quickly, as in mouth breathing, oxygen absorption is decreased.

    Excessive mouth breathing is problematic because air is not filtered and warmed as much when inhaled through the mouth, as it bypasses the nasal canal and paranasal sinuses, and dries out the mouth. Mouth breathing is often associated with congestion, obstruction, or other abnormalities of the upper respiratory tract. Co-morbidities include asthma, obesity, snoring, and halitosis (excessive bad breath).

    Breathing through the mouth with the nose obstructed usually imposes too little resistance and can lead to micro-areas of poor ventilation in the lungs (atelactasis).  Many years of breathing against excessive resistance as with nasal obstruction, may cause micro areas of poor ventilation (emphysema).  Barelli (Behavioral and Pshchological Approaches to Breathing Disorders.p.50 )

    Certainly, deviated septum, small nostrils, and other medical conditions may make it impractical for some people, but that bottom line is that the human body was designed to breathe through the nose.  If you’re breathing through your mouth, you’re depriving yourself of oxygen, aggravating any allergies you have, and making yourself prone to other potentially serious health problems.

    Also: the slack-jawed look is associated with the mentally disabled.  Hence, the pejorative sense of the term. “Mouth-breather” = stupid.

  9. Mark Finn says:

    Boy, did this whole thing blow up out of proportion!  The simple comment that started this was that it didn’t make sense to equate breathing through the mouth with stupidity (and the dumbfounded look of people with their mouth wide open – a look mouth-breathers actually rarely have).

    Of course, the body was designed to breathe through the nose.  Otherwise, why would we have a nose in the first place?

    Mouth breathing is the last resort of those with nasal problems.  Obviously such people are going to use their mouth; they’re not going to suffocate just to keep some people from thinking they look stupid.

    Do we really need to drag this out any more?!?  The bottom line is that people who are breathing through their mouth are not stupid, just “nasally challenged”.  :)

  10. Jennifer says:

    I just started checking this out today. I have always been a mouth
    breather. I do always have a dry mouth. I also had asthma as a child. I wish I could breathe through my nose-I have tried and tried and it doesn’t work. Going to the dentist has always been a challenge. I don’t think I have a deviated septum or anything like that. It sure is annoying to me and no one has ever complained about it. I am just getting worried.

  11. What a wonderful discussion—we don’t have enough pejoratives to sling around, so let’s create one that stimatizes people with nasal conditions!

    Might I suggest two more pejoratives for inclusion in this dictionary:

    nose-breather—A vain and shallow person; snob, diva, vainster (cf. the authors of the preceding citations)

    non-breather—an expired mouth-breather whose demise was due to asphyxiation in the course of aspiring to nose-breather status; corpse, carcass, stiff

  12. There are muscles which act to hold the nose open when breathing nasally, in order to switch from a mouth breather to a nasal breather you must exercise and tone these deep facial muscles in order to get to a point where you can effortlessly breathe through the nose…

    The face, the breathing mechanism, the jaws, the tongue, these things are all important areas of the human body that need exercise just like the rest of the body.

    For anyone interested in mouth-breathing vs nasal breathing, you should look into Tongue posture adn positioning.

    In a healthy adult ideal tongue posture is one in which the tongue rests against the upper hard palate of the mouth, in mouth breathers the tongue always rests on the floor of the mouth.

    Take care,
    Little B.

  13. Kathleen says:

    Hi
    I had developed asthma five years ago, and was on medications for it.  I felt very scared at not being able to breathe well, and eventually I searched the web to find a natural healing method.  I discovered a technique called Buteyko, which you can read about on the web.  The basic thing I learned, which resulted in my getting well from the asthma, being off all medications, and being healthier than I had been in several years, with only about three or four mild colds in the past 4 years, was that I had been overbreathing, including breathing through my mouth. By learning to slow my breathing I got well! 

    Buteyko was a Russian doctor who discovered that many many illnesses, including asthma, were associated with faster and more breathing than healthier people had.  He asked himself whether the fast breathing could be the cause rather than the result of the illnesses, and tested his theory by teaching people to slow down their breathing.  In fact, his theory is that asthma is actually the body’s response to the situation of having too much oxygen.  It is closing the breathing tubes in order to regain the proper balance of CO2 in the blood.  Why? It turns out that when the body has enough CO2, the blood cells can release oxygen to the cells.  (This is called the Bohr effect. It’s a necessary part of the regulation of O2.  Too much oxygen in the cells would destroy them. )  When people breathe more than they need (and we don’t need a whole lot when we’re just sitting in a car or at a computer) their oxygen levels increase to the point that oxygen is not released to the cells, hence the feeling, despite rapid breathing, that one is not getting air. As the cells use up O2, there is more CO2 in the blood, and eventually at the correct level of CO2 in the blood, the hemoglobin releases more O2.  I am now healthier than I had been in the past 5 years or so before I got sick.  I know this is a long letter, but there are so many people writing in here who have respiratory issues, I really want to tell you about this!  If you google Buteyko or just mouth breathing + asthma, you will find the Buteyko method and also plenty of other teachers who understand this link between overbreathing and asthma, snoring, allergies etc.  Western Medicine hasn’t figured this out yet, but they will.  The Western Docs scratch their heads because there are so many varied “triggers” for asthma, and they don’t understand the connection.  However, every asthma trigger I’ve ever heard of:  exercise, fearful emotions, certain foods (sugar and simple carbs), allergins, inner city living (where life is dangerous, putting people into the stress response nervous system, the sympathetic), all have this in common:  they speed up the breath.  When I was so sick, I took the Buteyko course. Although I don’t do exactly the thing I was taught in the Buteyko training, (which is a kind of bio feedback system of counting the pulse, slowing the breathing and counting the pulse again) I do meditate twice a day for about a half hour with the idea of relaxing and allowing my breath to slow down and my out breath to be come as slow and long as possible. I also tape my mouth closed at night (I know it sounds weird, but I soon saw that doing this cleared up the congestion in my nose (more CO2, and the nasal passages open) Through this method I have cured my asthma and am living a much happier life.  The proper balance of CO2 does lots of nice things.  It relaxes muscles, improves digestion and elmination functions, gets more 02 to the cells, and results in (or is associate with) a generally peaceful state of mind. So not only am I healthier, I am much happier too.  Please check out Buteyko, and if you want to know why I got well in a slightly different way than what they recommend, send me an e-mail and I’ll explain more.  But the point of all this is that in my very direct experience, breathing through the mouth is the cause rather than the result of nasal congestion.  I offer those of you who have nasal congestion to try this test the Buteyko folks use. Breathe out naturally then plug your nose with your thumb and finger.  Hold your breath and keep your mouth and nose closed, and nod your head vigorously;  this will use up Oxygen. If you do this long enough you will feel the nasal passages begin to open, sometimes the congestion will all go away.  If you are overbreathing your nose will probably close up again in a little while, but if you simply keep your mouth closed (except when eating or talking of course!)you may find that you immediately will have considerably less congestion.  I have several friends, who have improved their health immensely and rarely get colds any more, just through taping their mouths at night, being careful to keep their mouths closed, and keeping their mouths closed during excercise (a great way to balance the CO2 O2 levels…just slow your running down to the speed you can manage with mouth closed.  Withing a few days you’ll have more energy and will regain your speed and surpass your earlier ability.  The best runners in the world, in Uganda, run with their mouths closed!)

    If anyone actually read through all of that, thank you, and I hope it’s helpful.  Feel free to write to me with any questions!  Kathleen

  14. Kevin O'Hare says:

    I’d been hearing this term for maybe five years, and it never made any sense to me, but a quick Googling found me this page and now I totally get it. Whew. I didn’t read all the comments above, but maybe I can explain it pithily.
    This has nothing to do with mouth-breathing per se being equal to “stupid”. It’s that someone who does it often has (at least in my own US culture) the appearance of being slow-witted. A caricatured “country bumpkin” or “dolt” saying “duh” will usually have that “slack-jawed” look, and by inference is a mouth-breather.
    I used to take offense at this term, but I don’t think I will any more, now that I understand it.

  15. JE Switzer says:

    when I see someone mouth breathing I want to tell them to shut their mouth, not in a bad way. To have better body awareness is the key to looking and feeling your best, no matter what shape you are or are in. Posture, breathing, bearing are all basics of yoga and just standing up tall and nose breathing can improve your perception of yourself and there fore others perception of you. If you are aware of your body all the best will follow, so close your mouth and take a really deep breath.

  16. hey folks anyone who is a mouthbreather PLEASE READ THIS http://www.westonaprice.org/healthissues/facial-development.html
    I used to think mouthbreathing was just a bad habit socially but it actually affects many aspects of ones health and vanity

  17. Nathan says:

    While I understand that some breathe through their mouths as the result of a condition, when it is coupled with heavy-lidded bovine eyes, open, hanging mouth, protruding tongue and a general lack of situational awareness, we call those people mouth-breathers because they’re low toned, generally ignorant dunderheads. If you’re not one, you’ll probably catch no grief in the adult world.

  18. chen xian says:

    to Jane Burgess:
    u r a doctor or sth?

  19. Vipin says:

    My daughter is a mouth breather, not sure how it started but she used to get an infected ear every month from the age of 1 or so.
    She also had a hearing difficulty relating to glue ear, a couple of operations using grommits cured that however she still has high pressure in the left ear. I know she can breath through her nose as I often ask her to and I can hear the noise of the air gushing through the nose but she will then stop say after 50 breadths and revert to mouth breadthing. 
    It’s a great effort for her to breadth through the nose and her nose seem to be constantly running/blocked. I know she’s not getting enough energy into her blood as she gets easily tired and at times every thing is a massive effort. She does no sport or other exercise and when she joins in any sport she gets tired very easily.  Mouth breadhing is definately impeading her and I think she may be in a vicious cycle of gettting alergies when breathing through her mouth resulting in runny nose which seems blocked at the same time making it hard to breadth through the nose. When I took her to the doctors 2 years ago I was told “oh she’s a mouth breather and that’s OK” but I know it’s not, I wish I had done more research and then I could have discussed it in more detail but I just took her word.  I am taking my daughter, now 14, to the doctor again tomorrow and hope to get a more understanding response rather than being “buffed off”.
    In the mean time thank you for making me aware of the Buteyko method which I will discuss with my daughter.

    If anybody is aware of any other successful remedies please let me know. Many Thanks

  20. Tyler says:

    Vipin,

    Seeing as your daughter has been a long time mouth breather, you have to be careful with methods like buteyko which simply tell you to “close your mouth and breathe through the nose”…  You have to understand that your daughters facial muscles are weak and adapted to mouthbreathing, trying to have her forcefully hold her lips closed all day can result in further muscular damage, weakness, and eventually pain.

    YOU MUST BE VERY CAREFUL!

    I myself used to be a mouthbreather, and have successfully been making a gradual change to nasal breathing using a facial exercise program which strengthens all the facial/throat/and tongue muscles to support nasal breathing in a natural and effortless way.

    I encourage you to visit http://www.voicegym.co.uk and read through the information on that site very carefully and thoroughly.  Feel free to contact the author of the program, she is more than willing to answer questions.

    The key to nose breathing is a tongue which rests on the roof of the mouth, mouth breathers have weak and dysfunctional tongues which rest in the floor of the mouth.  You can’t simply tell a mouth-breather to “close your lips”, although this can be an effective strategy in the short term, it will only cause dysfunction/pain in the long run.

    again, i encourage you to check into http://www.voicegym.co.uk

    Best of luck in the future

  21. Tyler says:

    Vipin,

    Again… I want to stress, that telling a long-term chronic mouth breather to “close your mouth and breathe through your nose” can be like telling a hunch-back to simply stand up straight.

    Your daughters facial muscles are weak and dysfunctional, that is why when you tell her to breathe through her nose she automatically reverts back to mouthbreathing within 50 breaths.

    Having her use brute force to hold her lips closed all day can weaken the muscles further and make her even more of a mouth breather than before.  You must strenghten the face, lips, and tongue in favour of mouthbreathing, and re-program the use of the muscles so that everything happens naturally and effortlessly, this is what Voicegym is for, again I highly encourage you to check into it, http://www.voicegym.co.uk

    all the best

  22. Having read all of the above comments, I have this to add. My daughter, who is now, 27 years of age,has always had allergy and asthma problems. A inherited trait from me. My father, being of the medical profession, taught ME how to control breathing to reduce and control the “attacks”. I inturn taught her. Yet her mouth-breathing and snoring at night were not adressed, until trying the excercise recommended thru http://www.voicegym.co.uk . The difference in BOTH our health issues is TRULY dramatic.  THANKS for realizing a very common yet hard to control fact of life.

  23. Lil Brit says:

    Kathe Chandler,

    I am interested in this voicegym program, how long did it take for your daughter to see the improvements?  How long did it take for the snoring and mouth breathing to go away once she started the exercise program?  6 months? a year?

    please let me know!

    LB.

  24. Dearest LB,  EVERYBODY is unique, As with MOST people, the EXCACT SAME excercise will work better for some than others. Personally, I saw improvement with myself faster than my daughter, yet the smallest improvement with practice is constantly WORTH the effort ! ! ! Within a few weeks the results were amazing. BOTH of US have had less “attacks” , and the NEED for medications has DROPPED DRAMATICALLY ! !  Although still kept onhand for extreme emergency. The tactical SENSES have also IMPROVED,Smells,Taste and even Eyesight have icreased with better OXYGEN intake. Again, I must state that EVERYONE is DIFFERENT. I HOPE the program WORKS as well for YOU and YOURS. Wishing All The Best   KATHE

  25. Vipin says:

    Kathe,

    Voicegym sounds very promising and I hope it suitable for us. Tell me what is the one exercise that has made the greatest improvement to you and your daughter.

    Many Thanks
    Vipin

  26. Hello VIPIN,  WITHOUT infringing upon VOICEGYM’s program, which is not only benifecial but FUN for EVERYONE. I think the easiest and silliest to start is what my GRANDKIDS call the ” CHESHIRE CAT”. Re-learning how to SMILE, REALLY REALLY BIG. The other is what WE all heard about not getting a “DOUBLE CHIN”, Saying the vowels to the “SKY” although in “BEAT” to music with hard drumming, coupled with controled breathing. The whole of the program is well worth “CHECKING OUT” @ http://www.voicegym.co.uk   AGAIN, I must state, EVERYONE is “UNIQUE” and somethings work better for some than others, but with practice and time, well rewarding. WHISHING YOU AND YOURS THE BEST,    KATHE

  27. Lil Brit says:

    KATHE,

    How long do you do voicegym each day? 30 minutes? an hour? 2 hours?  Are you supposed to do it everyday of the week or everyother day???

  28. KATHE says:

    Aright Guys,  As I said before, EVERYONE is DIFFERNT and UNIQUE.  YOU willl have to find out what is comfortable for EACH person. As with ANY and ALL excercises, YOU start on LOW then upgrade to MEDIUM, then MAX OUT. There are NO short-cuts, IF you want to do it RIGHT. CHECK-OUT the PROGRAM. Find what WORKS for YOU ! ! !  VISIT their website.  http://www.voicegym.co.uk LOTS of INFO. Just REMEMBER to KEEP it FUN and PRACTICE will not be a problem.  KATHE

  29. Lindi says:

    WoW, all good information and helpful comments.

    I’m a mouth breather, although I try at times to breathe through my nose during the day when I become aware of it.  At night though when I go to sleep and lose awareness I always breathe through my mouth.  And I would like to learn to breathe through my nose all the time because I feel like breathing through my mouth is giving me dry skin.  I have eczema which isn’t that bad but its a chronic thing that won’t really go away.  When we breathe through our noses the air we breathe in is filter a little and its also moistened by our little nose hairs, so when the air enters our lungs it isn’t as dry.  Chinese medicine makes a direct correlation between lung vitality and skin vitality, and thats how I made the connection.  It makes so much sense.  That would explain why those who breathe through there mouths are prone to asthma which I don’t have but my brother whose dry skin is much much more serious does have asthma quite seriously.  And he is always breathing through his mouth.  Unfortunately it is very very difficult to breath through your nose if there is nasal congestion chronically, and that maybe can be changed through diet but sometimes not, maybe sometimes through some medication which I want to avoid at all costs.  I think as mouth breathers we are used to getting a certain amount of oxygen when we breath in, and then when you suddenly switch to nose breathing it can feel like your not getting enough air, thus why when I fall asleep I switch to mouth breathing, anyways I wanted any suggestions on how to train myself to nose breathe more (there are some in the posts above), I know its going to be difficult and a long path since this is such an ingrained habit but I know its drying out my body and my body is already dry to begin with so I’m trying to do all that I can.  I just wanted to post to make the connection between dry skin conditions and mouth breathing.

  30. KATHE says:

    DEAREST LINDI,  MY daughter, who I have spoke of before, had MAJOR sinus surgury. the CORRECTION lasted only a few months, then she was BACK to the same problems as before. I can not state enough times, that everyone is different. YET the programs and excersises entailed thru “voicegym” has made the most DRAMATIC and LASTING changes EVER. AS for the SKIN conditions,I, as well, had serious problems. Might I suggest, adding an extra dose of FLAX and FISH oil concentrate to the diet. IT is HEART HEALTHY and can be obtained at any DRUG STORE in a combo PACK. BEST WISHES TO YOU AND YOURS.

  31. Very good… eat well… breath well…and get plenty of fresh air.

    We all agree that mouth breathing is best, but thankfully we have our mouths as a backup. Aside from speaking and breathing, our mouths are primarily for EATING; and the practice of doing so quietly—WITH OUR MOUTHS CLOSED—seems to be THE FORGOTTEN EXERCISE.

    Additionally, chewing whole foods THOROUGHLY and COMPLETELY stimulates our nasal and throat passages, promotes digestion, and positively impacts our overall oral and respiratory health.

    Thank-you,

    RDH

  32. From Kathleen:

    If anyone actually read through all of that, thank you, and I hope it’s helpful.  Feel free to write to me with any questions! 

    From Randall:

    I did, and thank-you! Kathleen

    How do I write directly to you or anyone else who has written on this mouth breathing topic?

  33. I am a mouth breather with sleep apnea, but I am getting better with the help of nasal surgery to relieve the obstruction (probably stemming from hereditary snoring, a childhood accident, and man made and concentrated things in our air), CPAP therapy, and a chinstrap and 3M First Aid tape to help be keep my mouth closed while sleeping.

    I am still working on trying to keep my tongue in the upper position—which seems to be the key to improved nasal breathing—especially at night.

    I have tried Hawaii’s Dr.Sue’s dental appliance but it cut into the back of my tongue and otherwise irritated it. But I think he is on to something with a pacifier that can exercise ones sucking and swallowing muscles while nose-breathing.

    Respiratory Therapist should be picking be picking up his work as well as that of Buteyko and others to provide strait forward therapy.

    Thank-you

  34. L Brittle says:

    Randall,

    I suggest that you read some of the information contained on Dr Brian Palmers website, http://www.brianpalmerdds.com

    Sucking is no way to train your tongue and swallowing muscles, these are completely different and infact sucking has been known to create abnormal tongue action and breathing airways in children who use pacifiers as opposed to breastfeeding (when babies breastfeed they do not suck, they squeeze the nipple between the tongue and the roof of the mouth).

    Sucking pulls the facial structure inward and creates smaller airways and abnormal muscular function.

    Proper breastfeeding (which is not sucking) creates an outward and upward growth of the facial and oral structures and increases airway size and promotes proper muscular function.

    I strongly advise you to read that advice before using any sucking device to “strengthen” your tongue and airways.

    sincerely,

    LB

  35. Yes,

    Dr.Sue is an orthodontist and he is working on a divice to avoid the problems you mention.

    Do you have thoughts on :How best to strengthen our nasel breathing such that it becomes natural while sleeping and that Proper Tongue Positioning keeps one from snoring and gasping for breath.

    Do you and/or Dr. Palmers agree that the tongue positioning is key?

    I will ckeck to see.

    Thanks L Brittle

    RDH

  36. Thank-you.

    This is the most thorough web site I have ever seen. There is clearly such kind of problems accruing.

    There is an orthodontist named Dr. Sue in Hawaii that is working on devices to help this non-breast feeding problem. And for those that are older something to try and train the tongue to be in proper position to promote nasal breathing.

    My tongue seems large but aside from reduction surgery (so that my tongue might better fit up top to stop mouth breathing)this Nose Breath device seems to bea plausable option.

    Any thoughts?

    Randall Dean Holycross

    PS

    I had braces as an adult.

    I use CPAP and headgear and tape on my mouth to try and stop mouth breathing.

    Dr. Sue’s device cut into the skin under my tongue so I could not wear it.

    My nasal passages are generally clear after having my septum and turbinates cleared.

  37. LB
    You wrote:

    For anyone interested in mouth-breathing vs nasal breathing, you should look into Tongue posture and positioning.

    There are muscles which act to hold the nose open when breathing nasally, in order to switch from a mouth breather to a nasal breather you must
    The face, the breathing mechanism, the jaws, the tongue, these things are all important areas of the human body that need exercise just like the rest of the body.

    [For anyone interested in mouth-breathing vs nasal breathing, you should look into Tongue posture adn positioning.]

    In a healthy adult ideal tongue posture is one in which the tongue rests against the upper hard palate of the mouth, in mouth breathers the tongue always rests on the floor of the mouth.

    YES,

    Please tell us what you have found. What can be done to “exercise and tone these deep facial muscles in order to get to a point where you can effortlessly breathe through the nose…”

    RDH

  38. Hi Randall
    I’m happy to hear that you read through my lengthy post!  You asked whether you can write directly to people here….I don’t know the answer to that.  But I’ll put my e-mail in the text here, and I’m sure if that’s not ok the moderator will tell me.  My e-mail is merpig@juno.com and I’d be happy to hear from you directly.

    One thing that has helped friends of mine, and myself, with sinus, snoring and sleep apnea issues is taping their mouths closed at night.  I’ve been doing this for 5 years since doing the Buteyko program, and I sleep much better than before the taping. I know it can sound sort of weird, especially if you have sleep apnea, but a friend of mine with sleep apnea feels that taping hasn’t cured her of snoring,or even completely stopped the apnea, but it has improved a lot, and she is sleeping much better than she did before taping. 

    I hadn’t heard about this voice gym program, but I’m going to check it out now.  Sounds very
    interesting.  Thank you everyone for all the info.  Kathleen

  39. Hello Kathleen thanks for writing back.

    My ENT suggested Duct Tape but 3m works much better and my experience is like your friends.

    I have been taping it closed for a year or two and my mouth and throat feels fresher when I wake.

    Proper tongue positioning and whatever exercises that may help with that is of interest to me.

    The breathing methods are very interesting as well.

    What Buteyko materials do you suggest? Do they mention tongue positioning?

    I recall doing Aikido meditative breathing many years ago (during a very healthy time of my life) and the goal was to inhale and then slowly exhale.

    I would like to know more about your meditative practice.

  40. More information:

    The next area to consider is the palate area, at the level of your tonsils. In young children enlarged tonsils are the most common reason for obstructive sleep apnea, and this is easily treated with tonsillectomy (most of the time). However, as one gets older, the tonsils shrink, and the soft tissues of the throat and palate begin to stretch inwards with every apnea. Some young adults are lucky (or unlucky) enough to have persistently enlarged tonsils and in general do much is a better after tonsillectomy (with or without a palatal operation). If you have small or no tonsils your chances on a palatal operation curing you of obstructive sleep apnea is about 40% only. There are a number of ways of predicting whether or not an adult will respond to palatal surgery for sleep apnea. In general, if you have small tonsils and you can’t see at least some of your uvula (the thing that hangs down the middle of your throat) when you open your mouth, then a palatal operation alone is successful in 40%. What this means is that your tongue may also be involved.

    When you have tongue involvement, this means that either your tongue falls back from a normal position sitting up to almost completely collapsed when on your back. In most people with this condition, one is breathing through a small slit about 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch wide between the back of the tongue and the back of the throat. When awake, the muscular “reflexes” keep the airway open, but during sleep (especially deep sleep), this reflex does not work, and the tongue falls back completely, leading to an apnea. Another variation might be that the tongue falls back only partially, causing a more forceful vacuum upstream, narrowing the palatal area, when can then collapse totally, or when air squeaks through a very small palatal opening, one starts to snore. This is why certain dental devices that pull the jaw forward, pulls the tongue forward, alleviating snoring.

    As you can see from the above descriptions, if you place a pump on the “nasal” end of the long thin tube, and blow a gentle amount of air, the tube does not collapse. This is the basic principle behind a CPAP machine (continuous positive airway pressure). A soft padded mask is placed over your nose and a pre-measured amount of air pressure is delivered from a small bedside machine. CPAP is the first-line treatment for obstructive sleep apnea, and it works, but only if you use it. Due to obvious practical or logistical issues, many people are not able to use it consistently. Studies have shown compliance rates between 40-60%. In addition, intensive support and follow-through by the sleep medicine technicians and durable medical equipment was found to significantly increase the odds that you will do well and like your machine. Technology has advanced enough so that they are small enough to travel with, and there are hundreds of different masks, straps, and other gadgets that are available to suits one’s needs.

    I strongly encourage anyone with obstructive sleep apnea to at least try CPAP first, even if you have only mild sleep apnea. Despite your hesitation about CPAP and it’s implications, once it’s tried, about 1/3 of my patients love it instantly, another third hate it, and the remainder have to get used to it and after a period of follow-up and adjustment, they can use it effectively.

    Only after absolutely refusing CPAP, or if you tried it and hate it, can other options be discussed.

    Before rejecting CPAP altogether, if your nose is stuffy and the pressure seems too uncomfortable, then treating your nasal congestion may allow you to use CPAP more effectively. Allergies or sinusitis may be treated with medications. A deviated nasal septum can be easily repaired. Not only can you breathe better through your nose in general, but you can use CPAP much is a more effectively.

    As mentioned previously, a dental device can be made (by a dentist that specializes in this) to pull your jaw forward. This is effective in patients with mostly tongue involvement, and not appropriate for people with palatal level narrowing. The device is worn nightly, and incrementally advanced slowly to prevent jaw pain and bite changes. These devices have been shown to help significantly in appropriately selected people with mild to moderate sleep apnea.

    Lastly, there are surgical options, but only if you’ve rejected or failed the other options.

    Uvulopalatopharyngoplasty (or UPPP) was first described in the early 1980’s (about the same time as CPAP). Initially, they had good success rates, but over time, the success rates dropped to about 40%.

    A side note about success: One of the biggest frustrations is that people use different definitions of success. The most commonly used definition in our field is a greater than 50% drop in the AHI, and that final number has to be less than 20. Unfortunately, many studies vary significantly from this definition, and others use very unorthodox ways of defining success.

    Over the years, researchers have discovered that in cases where a UPPP fails, the tongue is the main culprit. Once the tongue collapse is addressed as well, the “success” rate increases to ~75%. Many subsequent studies report success rates in the 70-80% range.

    There are many ways of addressing tongue collapse. At Stanford, they perform (in addition to the UPPP) a mandibular osteotomy with genioglossus advancement (MOGA), and hyoid myotomy with suspension (HMS). MOGA involves advancing the portion of your tongue that attaches to the midline lower jaw, and HMS involves pulling the hyoid bone, which is a c-shaped bone on top of your voicebox that attaches to your tongue and voicebox. Of the 25% that fail this operation, a portion went on to more definitive surgery, called a maxillo-mandibular advancement. This is a complex and long procedure that literally pulls the middle of your face and jaw bones forward. As expected, this procedure is well more than 90% effective.

    An alternative to the MOGA is a procedure where a suture is attached to the midline lower jawbone, and looped around the back of the tongue, thus suspending the tongue from falling back. Results are similar to the MOGA, but much less invasive.

    One last word about palatal treatments for obstructive sleep apnea: There are various modifications of the UPPP procedure, which all have their roles for selected patients. A recent alternative to the UPPP for mild obstructive sleep apnea is an implant procedure called the Pillar procedure. Three thin polyester rods are implanted into the soft palate which causes a tightening of the soft palate as it heals over weeks to months. It was originally developed for snoring, but recently received FDA approval for mild obstructive sleep apnea. For treatment options on snoring, please refer to the snoring section on this website.

    If you have any questions about sleep apnea or any of the treatment options, please contact Dr. Steven Park, MD

  41. LB’s mention of the site http://www.brianpalmerdds.com is worth looking at. There is a tongue resectioning/reduction proceedure that looks gross but effective.
    Basically, it says that lack of breast feeding leads to poor mouth and throat cavity development.
    With a narrow and deep upper mouth cavity the tongue can not fit up into the space to seal off the airway between the nose and mouth—and so breathing is more “naturally” through the mouth than the nose.

    Dr. Sue : http://www.nosebreathe.com has the device for holding the tongue in place but it did’nt fit me.

    Do you think the voice gym program could actually shrink ones tongue?

    It seems unlikely,

    RD Holycross

  42. You might want to visit Steven Park’s website at: http://www.westside-ent.com   He is also about ready to send a book to his publisher.  In a couple of months, you might want to check to see if it is published.

  43. Mark Finn says:

    Yeah, it’s me again.  Wow, this topic has taken off!

    In case anyone is considering it, I’ll just say that I got my nasal septum realigned surgically, and now I breathe a bit better.  At least it seems that, when analyzed over the long haul, I seem to be stuffy less often.

    I still snore, though.  Above, I read the following:  “For treatment options on snoring, please refer to the snoring section on this website”.  My question is, “What Web site?!?”  I checked http://www.nosebreathe.com and http://www.brianpalmerdds.com but couldn’t find it.

  44. OK,People.  It’s Kathe again.  Before Anyone Decides on SURGURY Or MOUTH PIECES, PLEASE, PLEASE, CHECK OUT the Voicegym program as stated way up top.  I been through ALL that, IT is FAR less EXPENSIVE than SURGURY and MUCH more FUN than a poorly fitted MOUTH PIECE, OR the hazzard of having to tape your mouth shut… ! ! !  AGAIN, I have to STATE somethings WORK better for some, than others, BUT , this PROGRAM has PROVEN to WORK, not only WITH me and my daughter, but GRANDFATHER (84) and GRANDKIDS (3&1;.5),FRIENDS as well, have reported better over all improvment in HEALTH and ENERGY LEVELS. THAT it is FUN is an ADDED BONUS. http://www.voicegym.uk.co PLEASE CHECK THEM OUT FIRST.  BEST WISHES ALWAYS.

  45. The web address as given http://www.voicegym.uk.co does not get a hit.

    Such exercises should be part of good physical therapy breathing disdorders and be publically available. I have no doubt that it helps. The whole marketing thing, however, seems a little cheesy.

  46. SORRY GUYS, I really must double check myself. the PROPER site IS http://www.voicegym.co.uk   I do not know what YOU are considering CHEEZY, but I do know what WORKED AND IS STILL WORKING, without MAJOR DRUGS or SURGURY. Once again, sorry for the typo.  KATHE

  47. Tyler W says:

    Randall,

    Please notice that if you take a good look at the site http://www.voicegym.co.uk you can see that Angela Caine is not just a typical internet marketer.

    She actually runs A Voice and Body Center in which she has children, singers, performers, and speakers come to her center and get training on how to work the voice and the body for optimum performance.

    She has been running this center for nearly 30 years, long before the internet.

    Not only that but she is a member of cranio group and works very closely with dentists and orthodontists to make sure that children who are currently undergoing orthodontic work maintain proper tongue strength and posture.

    I encourage you to throughly read through the site and most specifically ready through the research section of her site,

    documents like “How voice training can assist in orthodontic treatment” and “beyond chewing” etc…

    Again, Angela Caine is not just another health guru attempting to sell a few exercises for mouth breathing on the internet.

    She is a professional that works with real clients on a daily basis face to face and specialises in re-establishing and maintaining healthy, proper tongue positioning and strength.

    I believe that voicegym only became available as a “package” that could be sold on the internet a few years ago.  Up until that point if you wanted to benefit from Angelas work you had to goto England and books personal appointments with her at her center.  The fact that she took the time to put together everything into a package that could be purchased by clients any where in the world is a huge bonus for those of us that are not in england.  She did nto have to do this and I imagine that most of her clients are still local and work directly with her face to face at her center.

    If you do anything, even if you don’t want to purchse the entire voice gym system right away, I highly suggest you purchase the book “Voice Gym Book – Get to know your Voice” by Angela Caine (available on amazon or http://www.voicegym.co.uk).  It contains a WEALTH of information regarding how the jaws, tongue, breathing system, mouth, etc… all work together.  This is information that is not easily obtained elsewhere.  I can tell you this from someone who was a mouthbreather and attempting to fix the problem and the typical “Just shut your lips” was not cutting it (which is explained clearly in the book I just mentioned).

    Do yourself a favour and seriously read through the site, see that Angela and her program are very sincere, and at least be open to the possibility that the program may be able to help you.

    If anything you can AT LEAST read through the Research section on her website, which is JAM PACKED with free information, spend a couple of hours reading through and digesting the information contained there and you will see that she knows what she is talking about.

    PS: In addition to helping my breathing, Voicegym has also helped my TMJ inredibly

    If you wish to contact me personally to ask questions about the program please don’t hesitate:

    tylerw@telus.net
    Vancouver, CANADA.

  48. Tyler W says:

    Randall,

    You said that “Such exercises should be part of good physical therapy breathing disorders and be publically available”

    You are right, they should be, but unfortunately as I’m sure you know the medical community can only agree on one thing, that they can’t agree on anything.

    Much of what Angela Caine writes about in her book and in her research papers on her website are ideas that are just plain and simple NOT known and understood by the medical community at large, even those that specialise in breathing and such things.  Much of what Angela has discovered and bases her program on are very detailed and interlocking concepts.  Unfortunately in the world we live in everyone wants quick fixes, and the medical community is obliged to gear most of its treatment in this regard.  Unfortunatley voicegym is not a magic pill that you take, it is a tool that helps to inform and instruct you on how to keep this specific area of your body in top functional shape for breathing, speaking, singing, chewing, balancing, etc…  The main factor in all of these is healthy tongue positioning, another thing she will teach you.

    Again, Angela for the most part works with real clients face to face at her voice and body center in the UK, many of whom are recommended to her by the medical community (dentists, orthodontists, physiotherapists, osteopaths, etc.) We should feel lucky that she put the time into making her program available to people who are not in the UK.  AND yes it’s unfortunate that it seems only ONE person in one very tiny corner of the earth seems to have a serious grasp on just how this important area of the body really works.

    For instance, did you know that your tongue muscles ultimately insert in your shoulder blades???  I be that is something that you would never find anywhere.  But angela understands these concepts.  She knows that the tongue inserts via the hyoid and larynx into the shoulders, and that in order to work the tongue properly this must be taken into account.

    Do you know what the most important muscle is for Airway patency and tongue positioning?  I will give you a hint, it is attached to your temporal bones on either side.  You will learn all this, how these muscles work together to allow you to chew, breathe, eat, speak, balance, etc… and how to target these muscles with functional exercises which are fun and engaging and not boring like running on a treadmill all day.

    Sincerely,
    Tyler.
    Vancouver CANADA

  49. Hey Tyler, GOOD TO HEAR FROM YOU AGAIN. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. Way up at the top of this “debate” you mentioned the “voicegym”. I DID check it out and reserched the the program.Once again, THANK YOU. I have been trying to tell the rest about the remarkable progress my family and friends have made with the program, even the ones without medical problems. And you are right. MOST of the medical community does NOT want to cure you, the WANT to KEEP you a customer. That’s how THEY make   THIER MONEY. Unfortunate, yet, true. Angela’s program is QUITE UNIQUE and MOST ENJOYABLE. Can not say “IT ” enough. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. BEST WISHES TO ALL.  KATHE

  50. I am sure that Angela and her program are very sincere, and I am open to the possibility that the program is helpful, especially from a developmental perspective.

    I just wonder why Respatory Therapist and OSA doctors are not documenting and distributing her work.

  51. Yes, to better therapies.
    Keep up the good work Tyler and Kathy.

  52. Perhaps, “Tongue Gym: A Guide to Healthy Nose Breathing and Bettre Sleep” would be a better distibution title for the wholistic method.

    If we could get Dr. Palmer,DDS and Dr. Park, MD (Clinical Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology – New York Medical College) in on it that would be even better

    Dr.Palmer suggest reading Dr.Parks forthcoming book, Breathe Better, Sleep Better: How Sleep Position Affects Your Health And Your Life.

    I look forward to continued reading and practice….

    Cheers,

    And Happy Thanks-Giving

  53. Kathe and Tyler:

    Since your practice, are your tongues smaller? In conversing with Angela Caine some time ago I believe she said it should. Do your tongues rest up, wide, and back in the mouth with the tip spread wide (up and back)? The tongue being postured like a cobra sounds good. Does this hold up during deep, unconscious, sleep?

    If we could get such success documented in a clinical trial many, many people could be help.

  54. Has anyone tried an All Natural Method That Permanently Eliminates Snoring And Gives You A Freaking Awesome Sleep Every Night … Completely Guaranteed!

    “You’re about to discover how an ‘incurable’ Snorer developed a Stop-Snoring program… that is curing even the worst snorers (and leaving doctors in disbelief) with a series of simple, step-by step 3 minute exercises…

    “If you’re also at the end of your wits with your (or your partners’) snoring, then discover how this foolproof system opens up the throat with simple yet very powerful exercises… that remove the blocks that are causing you to snore – even on your very first night!”

    Christian Goodman
    Postholf 186
    IS200 Iceland

    http://www.thestopsnoringexerciseprogram.com

  55. WELL SAID, TYLER. Could not have said it better myself, and apparently did not, although I tried. I have lived a hard and fast life. ALL that could be done has been done. Medications since I was I was 3 yrs., surgury at 10yrs., all kinds of “drugs” and therapies since then and nothing has EVEN come close to the REMARKABLE change the “voicegym” program has given ME and MINE. I am now “48” years into life and ENJOYING IT better EVERY day. I might not be as well versed as some, but, if you re-read some of the earlier comments,I HOPE, YOU will at least HEAR the truth of MY WORDS. CHECK OUT THE PROGRAM. IT is well WORTH the EFFORT. THE BEST TO YOU AND YOURS.  KATHE

  56. Tyler says:

    Randall,

    The reason it is called Voicegym, and not tongue gym is because the program is much more than just tongue exercises, tongue exercises are only one part of the whole system which aims to condition and strengthen your entire voice system.  The tongue being an integral part of that system.  Angela caine specifically works with performers (singers/muscians) who are looking to improve their voice but have hit a plateu of development ususally because of physical barriers (ie, poor dysfunction tongue posture, mouth breathing, etc…)

    I really don’t want to go into too much detail, please read through the free information in the research section of her site and educate your self.  You can see how the voice is something that is dependant on muscular function, strength, and balance all the way from your skull, through to your pelvis, and down to your toes.  Obviously the tongue is a very important part of this equation since a strong healthy tongue ensures an open airway, nasal breathing, and proper articulation of words.  But many other important parts play a role in speaking and singing which are important such as the hyoid, larynx, jaw, pelvis, shoulders, etc…  All of which are conditioned, strengthened, and balanced using the voicegym program.  All of these muscles insert into eachother and need to be worked together.

    Concerning Christian Goodmans program, I actually bought this program a few years ago, you can go ahead and purchase it (it’s pretty cheap) and take a look at some of the exercises, some of them are useful but I would not call him an expert by anymeans.  All you can do is try things and see how they work for you.

    The thing that has produced the best results for me so far (after trying many options like the face former, christan goodmans exercise program, and a few other devices and systems) has been voicegym.

    I will not lie to you, results with voicegym do not happen over night, it is not a magic pill, and your problem won’t be solved in a few weeks or even a few months.  Although for you it might, different people will probably respond differently to the program depending on what condition your voice and tongue in are to start.

    For myself, before starting the program my tongue was resting in a position so low in my mouth that the top of my tongue was below my bottom teeth (actually about even but the top of my tongue was below the top of my bottom teeth).

    Now my tongue is well up and away from my bottom teeth and you can actually see the indents in the side of my tongue from resting below the bottom teeth.  I’d say that it is about 65% of the way up towards the roof of my mouth at this point.  I have been working on the program in a disciplined fashion for approximately 6 months, and expect the tongue to reach its full posture (against the roof of the mouth) in the next 6 months or so.

    I imagine that reaching ideal tongue posture may take less time, or even more time for some people depending on how hard they work and what the starting condition of their voice and body is.

    Other things must happen for the tongue to reach proper posture, not just strengthening of the tongue.  The hyoid must decend to it’s adult position, the shoulders must be worked on, the pelvis, and the brain must be re-programmed to use the tongue in a new way (especially articulating consonants further back in the mouth and not against the front teeth).  This is all taken care of through voice gym.  Angela has covered all her bases and understands this stuff functionally inside and out.  The voice is a complicated mechanism, with the tongue being a very important part, but again everything is connected and inserts throughout the entire body which is why you must work the entire body and the voice/tongue together in order to establish the correct muscular relationships and balance.

    Sincerely,
    Tyler.

  57. Tyler says:

    Randall,

    You said “Does your tongue get smaller”

    To be honest I have not heard anything such as this, you would be better to email Angela directly and ask her.  It’s possible that if your tongue is too big for your mouth then you may need to have your palate widened by an orthodontist in order that your tongue may fit into the roof of your mouth, i know that some of angelas clients have had this done, in conjunction with using the voice gym program.  Again, Angela helps to treat many kids who are going through orthodontic work, working closely with dentists and physiotherapists to estbalish good function of the voice, tongue, and jaws.

    You also said,

    “The tongue being postured like a cobra sounds good. Does this hold up during deep, unconscious, sleep?”

    When you strengthen the appropriate muscles of the tongue (and not just change the position in which you forcefully hold the tongue) then what you are doing is changing the resting muscle tone of the muscles involved.

    This means that yes, even in deep sleep your tongue posture will remain.  And the stronger everything gets, the stronger and stronger your resting muscle tone will become, to the point where your muscle tone in deep sleep should be exactly the same as your muscle tone during your awake hours.

    The reason is that when your tongue is strong and finally resting up and back in your mouth, it will be doing so with absolutely no effort on your part, it will be resting here because this will be it’s position when the muscles are completely relaxed.  You shouldn’t have to think about where your tongue is resting in your mouth, if you are forcing it into certain postures and positions then you are most likely using muscular force to do so, using continuous muscular force to do something like hold your tongue in a certain posture or position will create muscular fatigue and will eventually weaken your tongue muscles.

    In the same way that if you walked around trying to make your biceps look big all day by flexing them you would eventually tire out and damage the muscle and then it would get weaker and smaller.
    However if you you work your bicep muscle with enough time and discipline then you don’t even need to flex it for it too look big, it is big and strong even when in a state of total relaxation.

    When you increase the strength of a muscle you cannot help but to increase the resting muscle tone of the muscle.  (The tone of a muscle when it is in a state of total relaxation)

  58. Tyler says:

    Randall,

    You said “I just wonder why Resparatory Therapists and OSA doctors are not documenting and distributing her work.”

    For the same reason that if you went to one of these doctors for help with your mouth breathing they will simply tell you to “Close your lips and breathe through your nose”

    It’s ignorance of functional anatomy and just how complex and interrelated the body is all the way from the tongue to the pelvis and down to the toes.  Again, read through some of the research section on the voice gym site, and it is explained by Angela in some of those pdf’s why you cannot just close your lips and hope to defeat mouth breathing, it is more complicated than this.  You might think Ok I’ve also been told to simply hold the tip of my tongue behind my front teeth, well it’s not as easy as that either, I can tell you from personal experience that this can be dangerous.

    Plus, treating OSA by strengthening and conditioning your entire breathing system (tongue, jaws, mouth, throat, etc.) takes hard work on the part of the patient.  The problem is not cured over night, and as I said, people want over night cures (ie sleep apnea machines, surgeries, etc…) and don’t want to put the time and effort into undrerstanding and building themselves a healthy body.  And of course the medical community has to supply where there is a demand, and the demand is for bandaids for modern health problems, not long term rehabilitation and preventative solutions.

    Did you read Dr Brian Palmer’s website about how important breastfeeding is for the development of a babies airway, face, tongue, teeth, swallowing, etc… and how pacifiers, sippy cups, bottles actually create an inward growth of these structures making for crowded crooked teeth, narrow faces, smaller airways, sleep apnea, and breathing problems later in life??  You would think that this information would be on every doctors desk and that there would be a HUGE push in western culture to make sure that all kids are breast feed and get a head start in life.  But alas you never see this information anywhere, it is underplayed, misunderstood, and ignored because we are a culture of convenience, mother is too busy to breast feed baby, or worried about what it will do to her breasts, or worried about what it will look like in public.  I tell you mother should be worried about the development of her babies skull and breathing passages.

    Look, if you want to understand your breathing, your body, and how your tongue and jaws play a central role in your overall health then I encourage you to at least read angelas book and research papers (free) and if the information seems important and relevant to you than i encourage you to think about purchasing the entire voice gym package and giving yourself a tool to keep your breathing, mouth, throat, voice, tongue, jaw, face, shoulders, etc all healthy and strong into old age while most people are becoming weaker, breathing worse, snoring, losing their teeth, mouth breathing, faces narrowing and of course, ultimately breathing problems lead to heart failure.

    I can tell you that I have spent hours a daily basis for more than i care to admit (and no, not just a couple of weeks or months) looking through information online concerning this subject.  I can tell you honestly that two of the best recources I have found with reliable, expert advice on this subject are the websites of Brian Palmer (http://www.brianpalmerdds.com/) and Angela Caine (www.voicegym.co.uk).

    Take a month or two, go slowly through the information on both of these sites, comprehend and digest it, and you will be equipped with the information you need to understand this very complex area and make decisions about whith professionals can help you with your problem.

    Once you have a firm understanding of this subject you will be illuminated to the fact that many doctors who are treating TMJ, Sleep apnea, Mouth breathing, Swallowing disorders, speech impediments, Poor posture, etc… are extremely misinformed and miseducated concerning this area.

    Something to think about: Most people in western culture have a tongue position in which their tongue tip rests against or just behind their front teeth.  Does this mean that this is ideal tongue posture? No it does not, in our culture it is rare to find someone that has a strong tongue that rests up, wide, and back in the mouth with the tongue tip spread wide and the body of the tongue postured like a cobra (up and back).  But then again it is also quite rare to find anybody over the age of 40 that is in exceptional health.

    Sincerely,
    Tyler.

  59. Well stated Tyler!

    I had my doubts, but you are a true campion for the cause.

    Thank-you

    I had to check on the word ‘hyoid’:

    I found this online (and medically speaking there appears to be good success with improvement in this area):

    OPERATIVE PROCEDURE

    Hyoid Suspension / Myotomy

    In the event of sever OSA, HSM is performed in conjunction with TS. This method inhances the anterior superior repositioning of the tongue base, enlarges the airway in a lateral dimension, and partially separates the tongue base from the lower airway by an infrahyoid myotomy.

    HSM is usually performed in conjunction with and immediately following TS. The anterior neck is prepped and redraped. The anterior mandible, hyoid, and thyroid are then outlined with a skin marker, with the neck slightly extended. Lidocaine with epinephrine 1:100,000 is injected into the planned incision sites. A 1-cm incision is made under the chin in the midline; with blunt dissection, the soft tissues overlying the mandible are cleaned. The screw inserter is loaded with a new spare screw and positioned perpendicular to the mandible, and with firm pressure applied, the screws is inserted into the inferior edge of the mandible. A loop of #1 polypropylene suture has already been attached to the screw by the manufacturer (Fig 1).

    A second, horizontal incision measure 5-7 cm is made over the body of the hyoid. Subcutaneous fatty adipose tissue can be dissected and removed. Electrocautery is used to separate the infrahyoid bone. A single bone hook is placed to retract and stabilize the hyoid during the dissection. The sternohyoid and thyrohyoid muscles are detached from the body of the hyoid between the lesser cornuae (fig 2). Careful dissection, avoiding injury to the pre-epiglottic far, and good hemostasis are mandatory.

    The suture passer is loaded with the polypropylene suture and tunneled subcaneously into the lower (hyoid) incision (Fig 3). The suture passer is then removed. One free end of the polypropylene suture is loaded into a Mayo needle and passed through the suprahyoid muscles, with a full thickness bite of the tissue. The hyoid bone is divided in the midline (hyoid distraction). This can be performed when the hypopharyngeal airway needs to be enhanced laterally, as determined by preoperative fiberoptic endoscopy. Following the division of the hyoid bone, the polypropylene suture is passed around both sides of the divided edges in a figure-8 configuration (Fig 4).

    The two ends of the polypropylene suture are then tied together to achieve a superior anterior pull of the hyoid and tongue base. The inferior wound is drained, and both wounds are closed in layers.

    All patients were admitted for close observation overnight. Peri- and postoperative care included steroids, intravenous antibiotics, antireflux medications, humidified oxygen, intravenous fluids, nasal trumpet, and pulse oximetry.

    FIGURE 1. A Repose system is used to insert a single screw to the bony mentum, via a small stab incision. A loop of #1 polypropylene suture is attached to the screw.

    FIGURE 2. A small horizontal incision is made over the body of the hyoid bone. The infrahyoid muscles are detached from the body of the hyoid bone using electrocautery.

    FIGURE 3. The loop of polypropylene suture is tuneled through the chin to the lower neck incision using a suture passer.

    FIGURE 4. The hyoid is divided in the midline, the loop suture is passed around the hyoid in a figure-of-eight fashion. The loop suture will suspend the tongue base antero-superiorly enhancing the posterior air space. The hyoid distraction will limit or eliminate the hypopharyngeal wall collapse. To see figures click here

    RESULTS

    Of the 55 patients who underwent HSM, all patients tolerated the procedure well, with no intra- or postoperative complications. Patients remained hospitalized postoperatively for 1-3 days, with an average stay of 1.4 days. No episodes of airway obstruction or bleeding were encountered. The most common postoperative patients complaints included dysphagia, odynophagia, and surgical wound pain. All patients were able to tolerate liquids and a soft diet at the time of discharge. No patients requested or required removal of the suspension sutures.

    After 3-12 mo of follow-up postoperatively, over 90% of the patients were subjectively improved, as determined by patient and / or spouse history. Symptomatic improvement included decrewsed snoring, improved quality of sleep, and decreased daytime somnolence. Follow-up PSG studies were performed 3 mo to 1 yr postoperatively in 52 patients. The patients who had undergone HSM showed significant improvement in the mean RDI, from 71.2 (+ / – 18.0) preoperatively to 28.4 (+ / – 16.8) postoperatively. We should note that the percentage of sleep time recorded with an oxygen saturation above 90% was 51.4% preoperatively and 80.1% postoperatively.

    Do you have clear hyoid improvement as well?

    Your provide very good example of success;I wish Steven Y. Park, M.D. Clinical Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery New York Medical College
    New York Eye & Ear Infirmary could hear from you as part of background information before finishing his book: Breathe Better, Sleep Better: How Sleep Position Affects Your Health And Your Life.

    Perhaps his new book could be:

    “Breathe Better, Sleep Better: How Voice Exercises Can Improve Your Health”.

    He can be reached at:

    sypark@mac.com
    http://www.westside-ent.com

    West Side ENT, PLLC
    212-315-9058
    212-315-9558 fax

    He is I very good fellow and I really do feel that you-all have a good deal to contribute to mission of better sleep through better breathing.

    It is essential your message that follows gets recognized:

    Other things must happen for the tongue to reach proper posture, not just strengthening of the tongue.  The hyoid must decend to it’s adult position, the shoulders must be worked on, the pelvis, and the brain must be re-programmed to use the tongue in a new way (especially articulating consonants further back in the mouth and not against the front teeth).  This is all taken care of through voice gym.  Angela has covered all her bases and understands this stuff functionally inside and out.  The voice is a complicated mechanism, with the tongue being a very important part, but again everything is connected and inserts throughout the entire body which is why you must work the entire body and the voice/tongue together in order to establish the correct muscular relationships and balance.

  60. Well stated Tyler!

    I had my doubts, but you are a true campion for the cause.

    Thank-you

    I had to check on the word ‘hyoid’:

    I found this online (and medically speaking there appears to be good success with improvement in this area):

    OPERATIVE PROCEDURE

    Hyoid Suspension / Myotomy

    In the event of sever OSA, HSM is performed in conjunction with TS. This method inhances the anterior superior repositioning of the tongue base, enlarges the airway in a lateral dimension, and partially separates the tongue base from the lower airway by an infrahyoid myotomy.

    HSM is usually performed in conjunction with and immediately following TS. The anterior neck is prepped and redraped. The anterior mandible, hyoid, and thyroid are then outlined with a skin marker, with the neck slightly extended. Lidocaine with epinephrine 1:100,000 is injected into the planned incision sites. A 1-cm incision is made under the chin in the midline; with blunt dissection, the soft tissues overlying the mandible are cleaned. The screw inserter is loaded with a new spare screw and positioned perpendicular to the mandible, and with firm pressure applied, the screws is inserted into the inferior edge of the mandible. A loop of #1 polypropylene suture has already been attached to the screw by the manufacturer (Fig 1).

    A second, horizontal incision measure 5-7 cm is made over the body of the hyoid. Subcutaneous fatty adipose tissue can be dissected and removed. Electrocautery is used to separate the infrahyoid bone. A single bone hook is placed to retract and stabilize the hyoid during the dissection. The sternohyoid and thyrohyoid muscles are detached from the body of the hyoid between the lesser cornuae (fig 2). Careful dissection, avoiding injury to the pre-epiglottic far, and good hemostasis are mandatory.

    The suture passer is loaded with the polypropylene suture and tunneled subcaneously into the lower (hyoid) incision (Fig 3). The suture passer is then removed. One free end of the polypropylene suture is loaded into a Mayo needle and passed through the suprahyoid muscles, with a full thickness bite of the tissue. The hyoid bone is divided in the midline (hyoid distraction). This can be performed when the hypopharyngeal airway needs to be enhanced laterally, as determined by preoperative fiberoptic endoscopy. Following the division of the hyoid bone, the polypropylene suture is passed around both sides of the divided edges in a figure-8 configuration (Fig 4).

    The two ends of the polypropylene suture are then tied together to achieve a superior anterior pull of the hyoid and tongue base. The inferior wound is drained, and both wounds are closed in layers.

    All patients were admitted for close observation overnight. Peri- and postoperative care included steroids, intravenous antibiotics, antireflux medications, humidified oxygen, intravenous fluids, nasal trumpet, and pulse oximetry.

    FIGURE 1. A Repose system is used to insert a single screw to the bony mentum, via a small stab incision. A loop of #1 polypropylene suture is attached to the screw.

    FIGURE 2. A small horizontal incision is made over the body of the hyoid bone. The infrahyoid muscles are detached from the body of the hyoid bone using electrocautery.

    FIGURE 3. The loop of polypropylene suture is tuneled through the chin to the lower neck incision using a suture passer.

    FIGURE 4. The hyoid is divided in the midline, the loop suture is passed around the hyoid in a figure-of-eight fashion. The loop suture will suspend the tongue base antero-superiorly enhancing the posterior air space. The hyoid distraction will limit or eliminate the hypopharyngeal wall collapse. To see figures click here

    RESULTS

    Of the 55 patients who underwent HSM, all patients tolerated the procedure well, with no intra- or postoperative complications. Patients remained hospitalized postoperatively for 1-3 days, with an average stay of 1.4 days. No episodes of airway obstruction or bleeding were encountered. The most common postoperative patients complaints included dysphagia, odynophagia, and surgical wound pain. All patients were able to tolerate liquids and a soft diet at the time of discharge. No patients requested or required removal of the suspension sutures.

    After 3-12 mo of follow-up postoperatively, over 90% of the patients were subjectively improved, as determined by patient and / or spouse history. Symptomatic improvement included decrewsed snoring, improved quality of sleep, and decreased daytime somnolence. Follow-up PSG studies were performed 3 mo to 1 yr postoperatively in 52 patients. The patients who had undergone HSM showed significant improvement in the mean RDI, from 71.2 (+ / – 18.0) preoperatively to 28.4 (+ / – 16.8) postoperatively. We should note that the percentage of sleep time recorded with an oxygen saturation above 90% was 51.4% preoperatively and 80.1% postoperatively.

    Do you have clear hyoid improvement as well?

    Your provide very good example of success;I wish Steven Y. Park, M.D. Clinical Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery New York Medical College
    New York Eye & Ear Infirmary could hear from you as part of background information before finishing his book: Breathe Better, Sleep Better: How Sleep Position Affects Your Health And Your Life.

    Perhaps his new book could be:

    “Breathe Better, Sleep Better: How Voice Exercises Can Improve Your Health”.

    He can be reached at:

    sypark@mac.com
    http://www.westside-ent.com

    West Side ENT, PLLC
    212-315-9058
    212-315-9558 fax

    He is I very good fellow and I really do feel that you-all have a good deal to contribute to the mission of better sleep through better breathing.

    It is essential that your message that follows gets recognized:

    Other things must happen for the tongue to reach proper posture, not just strengthening of the tongue.  The hyoid must decend to it’s adult position, the shoulders must be worked on, the pelvis, and the brain must be re-programmed to use the tongue in a new way (especially articulating consonants further back in the mouth and not against the front teeth).  This is all taken care of through voice gym.  Angela has covered all her bases and understands this stuff functionally inside and out.  The voice is a complicated mechanism, with the tongue being a very important part, but again everything is connected and inserts throughout the entire body which is why you must work the entire body and the voice/tongue together in order to establish the correct muscular relationships and balance.

  61. HIYA TYLER, ONCE AGIAN,WELL SAID. ALTHOUGH I FEEL like me and you are on a “round-a-bout” together, repeating the same answers to the same QUESTIONS, but in different formats, almost 30 or so posts ago. AH WELL, If they keep asking, I will at least try to keep answering the best I know how. CHECK “IT” OUT. TRY THE PROGRAM. “IT” WORKS ! ! ! WHAT could be better than going to sleep WITH a SONG in YOUR heart and a SMILE upon your FACE ? ? ? Again, Best wishes to ALL.  KATHE

  62. Kathe,

    I have tried Amazon for a book on voice Gym proceedures but without success.

    The web site does have some good information but it is not clear what is available for what price.

    Is the training a work in progress?

    What did you buy and what do you do.

    How is you tongue and hyoid position?

  63. Tyler W says:

    Randall,

    I encourage you to read through voicegym.co.uk with more attention and detail, notice the links down the left side,

    - About Voice Gym
    - About Angela Caine
    - Research

    etc… etc…

    Click the link “VoiceGym Shop” and it has everything listed there with prices.  What I bought is the total VoiceGym pack (down at the bottom of the list)

    The book she wrote is called “Voicegym book – Get to know your Voice” (which is one of the best books I have read which explains the entire breathing system and how it connects into the rest of the body).

    She also wrote another book called “The Devil Within” which is about her personal health struggle that started her on the road (30 years ago or more) to understanding and solving her own problem and creating voicegym to help other people.

    Randall, I am going to have to ask you to not ask me any more questions about Voice Gym until you at least read through all of the information which is contained in the “Research” section of the site,

    http://www.voicegym.co.uk/publications.htm

    This will give you a firmer understanding of some of the concepts, plus the information she has can explain things much better than I can.

    You asked,

    “Is the training a work in progress?”

    Yes, It is, and it will be for life.  Just as you should want to make exercise and fitness a part of your life in order to maintain health and bodily strength, you should make exercising your tongue, voice, breathing system and whole body a part of your lifestyle and something that you do for the rest of your life.

    EVEN AFTER You have reached a level of success with the program in which your breathing ways are open during sleep, tongue is resting on roof of mouth, hyoid decended to adult position (ie all the results that you eventually want out of the program) you are still going to want to use the system in order to maintain this strength and make sure that you do not lose it as you get older.

    Just like how exercise is not something you just do for a few months and then stop, you make it a part of your lifestyle once you make the decision that you want to be healthy and strong.  This is a life long decision, not just a year long decision, it is a change of lifestyle.

    Voicegym is the same way, it is a tool for life to keep your voice, breathing, tongue, and all the connected parts working in a strong balanced and functional manner.  It is not something you just do for a year and then stop once you achieve the results you were looking for.

    You asked,

    “What did you buy and what do you do. “

    I bought the VoiceGym pack, it has everything you need in it.  What do you do? You use the exercises and activities that are demonstrated and outlined in the book and on the CD to exercise all the parts of you that we have been discussing thus far.

    You asked,

    “How is you tongue and hyoid position?”

    Regarding my tongue position, I explained that in one of my last few posts please read carefully and you will see.

    Regarding my Hyoid position, I believe that it is nearly at adult position. I gather this from corespondance I have had with Angela in which she states that the way i am reacting to certain exercises means that the hyoid has nearly decended to the desired positioning.  Angela explains in her book and in her free research papers how the hyoid decends during childhood eventually to an adult position, unfortunately this does not happen fully with everyone.  Remember that the tongue is attached to the hyoid (more information that is explained in Angelas free research papers).

    Randall, I have to stress that you should really take the time to read through the research section of her website, there is TONES of information there to help you to understand much of what we are talking about here.

    Also You can search wikipedia for terms like hyoid, suprahyoid muscles, infrahyoid muscles, larynx, tongue, pharynx, nasopharyx, oropharynx, omohyoid, mylohyoid, styloglossus, etc… Look at pictures and learn all the muscles that are involved in this area and you can learn alot.

    Sincerely,
    Tyler.

  64. HELLO RANDALL. ALL very good questions. First for the pricing. I had to get a conversion chart between Brittish pounds and U.S. dollars, It has been a while since then. So I am not sure excactly, but he first was less than $50 w/tax. I purchased the “baby and me” for My Grandkids and Daughter. The oldest has a speech problem, he did not pronouce any sounds except the vowels and after checking out the program decided to try it, Nothing else so far had made any improvments.That is with having adnoids removed and tubes in ears, countless exams and several “SO CALLED” experts.That is alot for a 3 year old to handle. The program was SO easy and FUN, He did not realize it was therapy. Now he speaks almost as clearly as any “Orator” I have heard. After that, I purchased the rest of the program, and the many BENIFITS are truly astounding, muscle tone, weight loss,improved almost “EVERYTHING” you could mention. As for what I do, After learning the basic excercises, which you can do, any where, any time, and not nessasarly all at once, A litle here, a little there…I SING ! ! Getting quite good at it too. As for my tongue and hyroid, Can’t say. Have not been to a “DOCTOR” in almost 5 years, Haven’t needed to, Except for 14 stitches off a broken soda bottle at the lake, but that is another matter. I REALLY DO HOPE you give the program a TRY, as stated before, “WELL WORTH” every “PENNY” or “POUND” spent. Best to You and Yours.  KATHE

  65. Hyland says:

    Some of you people are so damn defensive! Work with what god gave you, if you breath through your mouth because you have medical conditions, thats one thing… if you do it because you’re lazy, or don’t know any better – then try and improve yourself. I was born with a cleft pallet, and often times suffer a rather nasty post-nasal drip, and as a kid, i had a hard time breathing properly through my nose… But by being conscious of my breathing (mainly through meditation and the accompanying breathing exercises) i’ve found that I CAN breath through my nose and that it increases my overall energy level.

    We have nose hair, not mouth hair (or if you do – might want to buy you’re lover a razor for christmas, and comb the bets) for a reason!

    In fact, the only times i catch myself slack-jawed and breathing through my mouth is when I’m totally engrossed in the TV… No wonder, the Idiot Box makes me look like an idiot.

  66. WELL Hyland,  I am not quite sure HOW I am to respond to YOUR comment. But if you read through all that and followed the posts train of thought, the POINT being, that no matter WHAT your medical problems, past or present, The “voicegym” program can and will continue to help. Where just basic breathing excersises only get you 1/4 of the way there. As I have stated a NUMERBER of times, EVERYONE IS different, WE all have our own problems, YET, this program WORKS ! ! !  CHECK IT OUT. http://www.voicegym.co.uk   BEST TO YOU and YOURS.  KATHE

  67. M n M says:

    Until 2 years ago, I was a mouthbreather. (I’m middle-aged.) I was dying. I was continually sick of colds and flu in the winter, and felt like I had a beehive up my nose in spring and summer. I learned about Buteyko techniques and they do help. PS: I have the physiological traits related to mouth breathing, but I can breathe through my nose now.

    In case you all didn’t notice it, Read the comment about Buteyko again. In Russia,where Buteyko breathing got started and where the asthma rate is now around 2% , the Buteyko techniques are used to help people breathe gently and through their noses. In the US and UK and Ireland, where inhalers are used and for some odd reason our professionals think people are too incompetent to learn new breathing techniques, the rate is around 25%. So, Russia, dirty, few environmental controls, little asthma. US, UK, Ireland, first world countries – loads of asthma. Enough said.

  68. HELLO M n M, I am glad You found a program that works for you and You are right, Most ‘professionals’ do NOT want to cure you, THEY want to keep YOU. after all, You are their paycheck. I do hope that You will check-out the “voicegym” program, The ADDED benifits are well worth the effort and IT is FUN for everyone. Always Wishing You The Best.  KATHE

  69. Very Good.

    Are you doing anything else, better? Saline rinse? Excercise? Food? Sex?

    Do you snore?

  70. HELLO Again Randall, well, as it has been since NOV.07 from my last post, on the progess of the program, I must assuredly state, YES, to ALL ! !  Even getting some color back in my hair, which was ‘shock white’ by the time I was 25, thought it was genetic, like my Father. As for MEDS, I might have to take a LO-DOSE allegy tab at the change of seasons, but all-n-all, none, compaired to what was close to $300 a month tab. Snoring, well My nose was never properly re-aligned after being broke as a child, and I found a small roll pillow under my chin and neck helps, but because of mouth-breathing, no. Please consider the ‘voicegym’ program, it TRULY is a WONDER. Once again ALL the BEST. KATHE

  71. Unfortunately, Buteyko and “voicegym” are not readily available in the USA. Such physical therapies do ot appear to gaining ground here. What can be done to make such help available, I wonder?

  72. Dearest Randall,The ANSWER to that is very simple and QUITE complex at the same time. IF i were to give the simple answer, IT’S MONEY. The TRUTHFULL answer could get You arrested. The FDA has pasted a “LAW” that states: “ONLY A DRUG CAN CURE, PREVENT OR TREAT A DISEASE.” Think about IT. Take a well documented disease like “SCURVY”. It is KNOWN that is is caused by Vitamin ‘c’ deficiency. If SOMEONE were to say in a PUBLIC PLACE, MIND You I am NOT,“THAT EATING CITRUS FRIUT CAN “RID” YOU OF “SCURVY”  They could be arressted for selling a DRUG with out a LICENSE ! !  What makes you think THEY would even consider something so simple as breathing, UNLESS it had A “DRUG” in it, they could continue to make money off the sells ? ? ? AS for making HELP known, KEEP on TALKING, FRIENDS, FAMILY,NEIGHBORS,Some Might Listen.  BEST To YOU And Yours. KATHE

  73. Annie says:

    Well,
    since I was born,
    I have NEVER breathed through my nose.

    I do not know how to do it.
    I have never done it

    and I don’t even know how to go about learning.

    Doctors think I’m “disabled”
    But a private health clinic said that it may not even be possible for me to do it as I have never done so before.
    It is physically impossible.

    Please help,
    Annie , 13 years of age.

  74. Hello Annie, Without Knowing Your EXCACT phyical ailment as to WHY it would be impossible, the best I have to offer is the “VOICEGYM” program as stated in several posts. The simple fact that YOU have survived thru childhood indicates, that at one point You could breath thru your nose, otherwise, would have sufficated will nursing. Again, EVERYONE is different and Re-training can be more difficult for some than others. Please read some of the previous posts again and “SEE” some of the benifits gained with the “VOICEGYM” program MY family have experienced. BEST To YOU. KATHE

  75. Kevon says:

    SO DO YOU BREATHE THROUGH YOUR MOUTH OR NOSE WHEN TALKING?????

  76. HI Kevon, Do not know if Anyone Has told YOU that Typing in ALL caps is considered YELLING and therefore RUDE, But if YOU really require an answer to such a silly question, the simple act of speaking involves air moving across the vocal cords, rather hard to do with your mouth shut. Unless your Humming or a PUPPETEER with a “DUMMY”. Lot of hard work and training, for that kind of job. Later, KATHE

  77. To everyone,

    Thank you for all of your wonderful comments, they are very informative and I am glad to see people taking this seriously, as it is. After reading all of your comments and doing a little research of my own, I have decided it is best not to breathe through my mouth. However, I have also decided it is not best to breathe through my nose, either. Instead I have trained myself to develope gills which I am happy to say work wonderfully. True, I do look a little “odd” wearing a glass bowl on my head at all times, but I feel great! And the best part about it is that I can now swim underwater as long as I want without having to worry about coming up for air.

    I hope my comment has been as helpful as all of yours.

    Sencerely,
    Frank “Aquaman” Johnson

  78. Kathe says:

    Dearest Grant, That last COMMENT was NOT EVEN worthy of You posting,  SIGH.

  79. vipin says:

    Frank – be careful you don’t drown & best of luck with your breathing.

    Kind regards
    Vipin

  80. Catherine says:

    Please help a middle-aged, life-long mouth breather. I have a heritable connective tissue disorder (which may or may not be Marfan’s Syndrome—that is very hard to diagnose). So all the connective tissues throughout my body are too loose/too stretchy, including my soft palette, which droops. My abnormally large tongue does rest incorrectly on the floor of my mouth.  My palette is very high and arched. My teeth are crowded. My face is very long. (Think Abraham Lincoln’s face on a woman). And yes, my mouth is open, looking stupid and causing bad breath. My jaw clicks. My tonsils were removed at age 20 (my parents chickened out when I was 7—perhaps earlier removal would have helped.) I have obstructive sleep apnea. I snore and always have. I was a bedwetter as a child.  I never get uninterrupted sleep. I have ongoing problems with depression. The pillar procedure was a total failure for me. I cannot tolerate CPAP no matter what I try…chin-straps, etc.  The bridge of my nose is very high and my face is very narrow and masks do not fit well at all. I am tall and thin. I do not swallow in my sleep. Moisture from the humidifier on CPAP builds up in the back of my mouth (like water dripping from the roof of a cave) until suddenly it rushes down my throat and I wake up in a choking panic, feeling as though I am drowning. CPAP experts merely say, “well, everyone swallows in their sleep…” Not me. When you breath with your mouth open all your life—awake and asleep—your mouth is always dry. Trying CPAP without a humidifier left my nasal passages feeling scorched. I’ve seen ENTs who cannot figure out why I am a mouth-breather. I had childhood allergies/respiratory problems. I outgrew the allergies. Everyone, including ENTs, implies that my mouth-breathing is simply a habit leftover from childhood. But I CAN’T GET ENOUGH AIR when I nose-breathe. And I can’t make my tongue stay up at the roof of my mouth when I’m awake, much less when I’m asleep. I wake up gasping for breath over and over again. I jerk constantly in my sleep—the sleep technician told me it is my body’s way of waking me enough to keep me breathing. I dream constantly. I never seem to get past REM sleep into deep, dreamless sleep. It is exhausting. I can’t help but feel like if I could correct the mouth-breathing, then the sleep apnea would be resolved or at least improved and that would help my depression. But no one can tell me how to stop mouth-breathing after 40-some years. Is there surgery? A device? Medication? It’s too late to correct the resulting facial deformities at my age with mere exercises. I don’t even know what kind of doctor to go to anymore. Would a pulmonolgist deal with irregularities in breathing and facial malformations? I believe that more attention should be given to the connection between mouth-breathing and sleep apnea with a medical emphasis on solving the mouth-breathing instead of just sticking everyone on CPAP (which is a big, profitable business). Any advice is welcome!

  81. dearest Catherine, I know that the thought of JUST singing does not sound like much of a corrective measure, but if done with the excercises outline with the ‘voicegym’ methods as I have posted many times before, the results are truly remarkable. Again EVERYONE is different and have their own barriers to overcome, yet I strongly encourage you to at the very least to check their website.KATHE

  82. Karine says:

    Hi everybody,

    Many people said that breathing through the mouth is just a matter of habit. That would be great if this was my case.

    Unfortunately, I have Allergic Rhinitis, and since I’m always stuffed up, I just cannot breathe through my nose. Also, it is not a matter of blowing it more often. I do it all the time and it does not work.

    The doctor said I have only to stay away from dust and from my Persian cats, but that’s impossible. I get stuffed up in cold weather too.

    Well I wish there could be something to stop this Allergic Rhinitis.

    Cheers for everybody,
    Karine

  83. Ditto, Karine. As many times as posted before, I have (had) the same condition(s) as most that have commented on, with the exception of a physical malformaton. Since beginning the ‘Voice Gym’ program, oh so many months ago, these conditions no longer exist. The Program is FUN and easy. The Whole family can benefit. Again, I MUST point out, that everyone is different and some technics work better for some, But, all are worth the effort.  Before, You chance ‘Drugs’ or radical surgery, Please, check out their program.Best to You and Yours. Kathe

  84. Hi KarineI would like to second what Little Brittle has written so succinctly.  If you scroll way up you’ll see a quite lengthy post I made a while back about my experience with asthma and the Butyeko method of allowing my breathing to slow down.  I didn’t mention that at the time I had the asthma, I was also very allergic and stuffed up in the nose and head.  It seemed strange to think that breathing less would open up my nasal passages, but that is exactly what happened.  It has now been about 6 1/2 years since I learned that breathing less (in the deep quiet way that Little Brittle describes) was amazingly great for my health. In this past year I have not had even a single cold…perhaps it’s been two years since I had one.  Whenever I get a tired stressed out feeling I do my “slow breathing” meditation for a half hour or so, and i will literally feel that oxygen returning to my cells and my energy returning.  I do this before bed every night, and I sleep very well.  I’ve learned so much from this that I couldn’t put it all in an email…I recommend the book Keep Your Mouth Closed, which is from the Buteyko Ireland website…I’ve forgotten the author’s name at the moment, but I know you can find it by googling.   Good luck!  Kathleen

  85. Karine,

    1)Learn to breathe through your nose (many therapies can help you with this… specifically Voice Gym therapy or traditional tongue re-training therapy, speech therapy, etc…)

    2) Learn to slow down your breathing, relax your breathing system, and breathe less.  (Buteyko breathing is easily the best method for doing this. Buteyko practicitioners can also help you to stop mouth breathing)

    I know it sounds strange, but the more you over-breathe (and you probably don’t even realise you are doing it until you learn to slow your breathing down).  As I was saying, the more you overbreathe, the more stuffed up you get.  Learn to slow your breathing and amazingly your nasal passages open up completely.

    This is REAL deep breathing, most people, when you tell them to deep breathe will take loud sharp inhalations and exhalations thinking that this exagerated breathing is deep breathing, this is not deep breathing, this is heavy shallow breathing.

    Deep breathing is quiet, and much more subtle than people realise, it is almost as if you are not breathing at all.  This is scary at first for alot of people (especially people who get accustomed to sucking in so much air with their face that they don’t know what it means to allow their body to relaxedly breathe)

    My biggest suggestion to you is to go see a buteyko breathing practicitioner and learn to slow your breathing down, you will be simply amazed!!!

  86. Karine says:

    Oh thank you all very much. I’ll surely try those therapies! I didn’t know about Buteyko breathing. It’s good to see that it’s helped you Kathleen.
    I’ll try it!

    Thank you Little Brittle, Kathe Chandler and kathleen hannan!

  87. You’re so welcome Karine!
    It makes a wonderful start to my new year to know that someone is on her way to relaxed, easier breathing! Kathleen

  88. vipin says:

    I suggest Yoga, an hour a day in a dark and quiet room. This will get you to listen to your breathing (initially 15 min inhaling through the nose and out through the mouth; 15 mins reversing – then using the nose only: 10 mins of slow deep breathing, 5 mins of slow shallow breathing, 5 mins of very fast shallow breathing and then 10 of slow deep breathing).
    Do the Yoga with a light smear of “Tiger Balm” all over the nose – Tiger Balm is essentially clove, cinnamon, camphor oils mixture or just plain Vicks or similar will do. At night smear a generous amount of balm mostly under the nose but cover the whole of the nose well. Finally for a persistent blocked up nose due to allergies try NASONEX.
    All the above have helped my daughter but I am afraid closing the mouth and forcing yourself to breath through the nose is down to practice just like the yoga and spreading the balm on the nose.
    Hope its of help – if it works for you let us know.

  89. Gregg orange says:

    I have no choice but to breathe through my mouth as my pallet bone never devided properly on the roof of my mouth and my nasal passages are just simply not large enough to accomodate nasal breathing. I didn’t know this until I had orthodontic work done as a teenager and the diagnosis was made. Without major costly surgery and recovery time I will always be a mouth breather and I am already 46 years old, so I just have learned to deal with it. I have had asthma and respiratory problems my entire life. I also have a major problem with sleep apnea as a result. My tongue slip into the back of my throat during sleep restricting airflow and I will wake up in the middle of the night gasping for air. All of you assholes that are making fun of mouth breathers need to just shut up. There are many of us that just simply cannot help it and it is a serious life threatening condition that is no laughing matter. have a heart.

  90. tiny says:

    Here is the link, I forgot to post it:

    http://www.atlantadentist.com/Mouth_Breathing.html

    Catherine, if your still there:  This a website which explains the connection between allergies and mouth breathing.

    A regimen which could help you
    is 1) eliminating the allergen 2) corrective the place of the tongue, put it on your upper palate instead of lower when you notice it is down 3)daily 5 minutes of closed mouth straight backed deep breathing (with the tongue in the same position, and the the breathing going through your lower abdomen and pushing outward)

    Doctors vehemently told me I never had a milk allergy.  My suspicion is that if a lot more people eliminated the mucous causing substance which caused me problems, and could easily interfere by stuffing the passage way.they wouldn’t have had the problem in the first place.  Word to the wise- if you try to replace milk with soy milk go organic OVer 90% of US produced soy is suspected to be genetically engineered (gmo).  GMO can, also, cause nasal and throat allergies And, the result is what you will see described in that link.

  91. Sam says:

    Hi – Hoping someone here might be able to recommend an orthodontist in the Vancouver, BC, Canada area who practices Nonextraction Othodontics and/or Functional Jaw Orthopedics.  After reading much of the work of Angela Caine, Steven Park, Steven Sue, Raymond Silkman, Weston A. Price, Steven Page, etc., I believe that some jaw-and-tongue issues are contributing to sub-optimal nose-breathing, and thus a whole host of other health problems that I’d like to try and resolve.  Thanks in advance for any assistance.

  92. People don’t do this because they WANT to. I have a bad sinus infection and have had for many years, and have no choice. Air just simply won’t go through my nose. It is easy to say just go and get it fixed but who has health care and when you do spend money to fix it, it doesn’t work all the time and then you are out of cash.If I could breathe through my nose, trust me i would. It is upsetting also to see everyone around you that is able to breathe and taking this ability for granted. No one thinks of breathing at all until you have to sleep every night with what seems like a plastic bag over your face. Having to wake up 3-4 times a night to flush infection out of your nostrils.Always tired because of lack of sleep and oxygen.This is to all of you who think that people are out there “mouth breathing” just to irritate you. It’s YOU who irritates US with your ignorance about what others may be suffering from and your inability to empathize with anyone but yourself.

  93. Hi Gregg
    I am not a buteyko practicioner but even if you can’t breathe through your nose at all, I think a buteyko person could help you learn to breathe a lot less, which is really what matters.  If you read further up you’ll see the way the one weekend Buteyko class changed my life, in getting me to understand that my allergies and asthma were caused by overbreathing.  I learned to only breathe as much as necessary when sitting still.  We don’t need to breathe very much at all when we are just sitting.  I did this by learning to relax the muscles of my belly and diaphram so that my diaphragm can move further down and also further up into it’s full range of motion.  Even in that first weekend workshop I could tell right away that the more I let my breathing slow down, the more my nasal passages and lungs cleared up.  The thing they taught me also is that asthma and stopped up nasal passages are the body’s way of holding in CO2 if a person is overbreathing.  The right levels of CO2 in our blood allow the hemoglobin to release it’s Oxygen molecules to the cells as they use up Oxygen.  In a bloodstream with not enough CO2, a person can have lots of Oxygen, but it won’t be released to the cells.  If you read through the experiences of people above you’ll see that although they’re talking about nose breathing, they are more importantly talking about breathing less.  Good luck!

  94. BeCareful says:

    I think people should consider very carefully before giving any money to the voicegym that has been spruiked ad nausem in the above comments.

    Some may say it has the characteristic hallmarks of a hard-sell publicity campaign.  The forum posts about it read more like a marketing spiel than a genuine customer’s actual recommendation.

    Remember that it is trivial to create enthusiastic posts seemingly from multiple people who rave about the DRAMATIC improvement its made in their life.  This is pretty common practice among PR agencies sad to say. 

    It’s a fairly common recipe:
    The Miracle Cure
    The gushing testimonals
    The DRAMATIC results

    and all this for the low-low price of $X! 

    Ironically, despite the usual bagging of the greedy profit-centred drug companies, the miracle cure sites don’t feel compelled to publish their technique for free and thus help countless millions who can’t afford the treatment!

    Of course, I’m not suggesting other’s comments in praise of the site or the site itself are anything other than legitimate.  It’s good to keep an open mind about alternates…just keep your eyes open as well.

  95. BeCareful says:

    I think people should consider very carefully before giving any money to at least one website that has been spruiked ad nausem in the above comments.

    Some may say the comments have the characteristic hallmarks of a hard-sell publicity campaign.  The forum posts about it read more like a marketing spiel than a genuine customer’s actual recommendation.

    Remember that it is trivial to create enthusiastic posts seemingly from multiple people who rave about the DRAMATIC improvement it has made in their life.  This is pretty common practice among PR agencies sad to say. 

    It’s a fairly common recipe:
    The Miracle Cure
    The gushing testimonals
    The DRAMATIC results

    and all this for the low-low price of $X! 

    Ironically, despite the usual bagging of the greedy profit-centred drug companies, the miracle cure sites don’t feel compelled to publish their technique for free and thus help countless millions who can’t afford the treatment!

    Of course, I’m not suggesting other’s comments in praise of the site or the site itself are anything other than legitimate.  It’s good to keep an open mind about alternates…just keep your eyes open as well.

  96. amy_lu says:

    Yet another bizarre American vanity issue, and insulting to boot. Saying ‘It’s all right, we don’t mean actual mouth-breathers are stupid, it’s just an expression’ is like saying ‘It’s all right, we don’t think actual gay people are bad, it’s just an expression’ when people say ‘That’s so gay’ etc. IE it only enforces the insult.

    I don’t breathe through my mouth all the time – mostly to do with my cleft lip/palate – but when I do I do so totally silently. And like many people who beathe through their mouths, I do so with my mouth open to the barest minimum. And I have an insanely excellent immune system. And I’m not completely paranoid about how people might judge me for INHALING ESSENTIAL OXYGEN.

    I agree that little children sitting gaping is unattractive, but forcefully telling them to stop is ridiculous. You people whittering about the so-called ‘health issues’ have too much time on your hands and I feel sorry for your kids being brought up with such an emphasis on physical attributes. Why can’t children just be children? Anyway, I am so glad I don’t live in a country apparently full of insane people. I’ve never heard the expression in the UK and I wouldn’t care to.

  97. OceanDeep says:

    My heart goes out to all individuals who have a permanent uncorrectable condition that renders nasal breathing impossible.

    But what we have here are a lot of people who have never questioned or sought to correct their mouth breathing when they have a reversible condition (ie allergies, asthma, weak jaw muscles, poor diet consisting dairy and meat products etc) that is causing their mouth breathing.

    Instead some have even tried to reason how mouth breathing could be superior to nasal breathing without regard to their own health or the socially awkward situation they can create for others.

    Accepting a negative health modality or telling your self its actually good for you when you have the power to research it and correct it is actually both stupid, lazy, and socially inconsiderate, fitting the many definitions of the derogatory “mouth breather” term.

    Mouth breathing is socially offensive often because the mouth breather’s breath is offensive. One of the many negative effects of mouth breathing is dry mouth and dry mouth can lead to tooth decay and bath breath (halitosis). A normal sized room can quickly be fouled by a mouth breather with unrefreshed breath.

    If you can help mouth breathing but choose to accept it as a way of life it is offensive to yourself and most of the people you will breath around.

    For your long term health’s sake if you are a mouth breather, you should research this heavily, try to find the underlying cause of your mouth breathing, and work out a way that will reverse the problem.

  98. Jenny35 says:

    I read through the majority of the comments, and I have to say that I am going to start using the techniques and websites mentioned.

    I was never told while I was growing up that mouth-breathing was a problem. My mother for health reason was unable to continue breast feeding me for as long as she should have. I sucked my thumb and mouth-breathed all the time. My lips don’t even naturally close. At rest, they sit slightly apart.

    Luckily I had no major health problems from this, but I always wondered why my face was longer and narrower than the rest of my family and why I had a slight nasality to my voice.

    I read a lot of articles about preventing these facial changes from happening in younger children and wish I had known about it while I was still in my growth phase.

    As an adult, it seems the only improvement obtainable is re-training yourself to breath through your nose. But if the nasal passages are too narrow because of 20 years of mouth-breating, would the only course be to have nasal surgery?

  99. TheAnalyst says:

    LOL @ all of the ignorant views about “Mouth breathing”. Who gives a flying fudge how someone breathes? The fact that you can even have a serious debate about Nose vs. Mouth breathing is completely retarded.

    Oh, and for the record, the nose isn’t meant simply as the conduit for oxygen intake and CO2 expulsion. The nose’s specialty is smell sensory.

    Btw, I can recall at least a dozen situations off the top of my head alone where mouth breathing is a must, and another dozen where nasal breathing is helpful. Neither takes precedence above the other, except in certain specific situations.

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