Mouth Breathing

Q:

My daughter breathes through her mouth at night and sometimes during the day.  Can breathing through her mouth cause any dental problems?

 

A:

Breathing through the mouth on a regular basis can have an affect on the teeth. The constant flow of air through the mouth can be very drying  making  it more likely that plaque will stick to the teeth instead of being washed away by the saliva. Plaque stuck to teeth long term can cause gingivitis and dental decay. 

 

When children keep their mouths open for breathing they are also more likely to have difficulty pronouncing certain sounds-most of the time a lisp or the inability to say 'S' sounds correctly. 

 

And combined with an obstructed airway, mouth breathing  is another symptom of sleep disordered breathing or sleep apnea. 

 

If you have more questions about mouth breathing be sure and talk with your dentist or pediatrician!