Buteyko Breathing Promotes Proper Airway Function and Improves Overall Wellness

At Knight Orthodontics, we are committed to providing our patients with the most comprehensive care possible. Dr. Knight is certified in Buteyko breathing techniques to help promote healthy breathing patterns and overall wellness. This treatment can help both children and adults with airway passage dysfunction and can improve symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea as well as jaw and development problems.

What is Buteyko Breathing?

In the 1950s, Ukrainian doctor Konstantin Buteyko noticed that many cases of asthma and respiratory illnesses could be improved by a series of complementary behavioral changes based on breathing, breath-holding, and relaxation. He posited that patients who breathe more from the mouth (rather than the nose) were often chronically hyperventilating themselves, to the detriment of their health. With his studies, the Buteyko method was developed to address a variety of related health concerns. This complementary therapeutic intervention is extremely popular today and has millions of supporters and practitioners worldwide.

Buteyko breathing exercises have many applications, but are most often used to treat:

  • Asthma
  • Allergies
  • Snoring and apnea
  • Anxiety and concentration problems

The Buteyko Clinic Method consists of breathing exercises, small lifestyle changes, and monitoring your breath volume and breathing patterns for optimal respiration and blood oxygenation.

Why is Mouth Breathing Harmful?

When you look at the animal kingdom, there are few, if any, mammals that breathe out of their mouths. The nasal passage is, and always has been, the optimal way for humans and other mammals to bring oxygen into the body. Even during exertive aerobic activity, nasal breathing is more efficient at oxygenating the blood. Why? When we inhale through the mouth we take in more air, which can lead to hyperventilation. When we exhale through the mouth, we exhale much faster. A long, slow nasal inhale and exhale ensures the oxygen spends maximum time in the lungs and brings the right amount of oxygen per breath into the body.

Beyond breathing disorders, the benefits of nasal breathing can improve the functioning of all major body systems. Proper blood oxygenation improves the health of all internal organs and prevents the constriction of the smooth muscles that surround blood vessels and airways.

Mouth Breathing in Children

Studies have shown that mouth breathing in children is associated with a number of unhealthy conditions, such as hyperactivity, behavioral problems, and sleep disorders. Mouth breathing can also contribute to a retruding lower jaw and overbite, which can ultimately lead to TMJ disorder and bruxism. Buteyko therapy is a safe way to help children train themselves to breathe properly for better respiratory function and jawbone function.

Buteyko Breathing for Sleep Apnea Treatment

In adults, retraining yourself to breathe properly during the waking hours can improve respiratory function and reduce symptoms of sleep apnea. The Buteyko Clinical Method serves as an effective complement to obstructive sleep apnea treatments, and many patients find it helps reduce their reliance on CPAP and oral appliances.

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