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What Causes Mouth-Breathing?

Dr. Nishit Shah 84% (10 ratings)
MS - ENT, DNB (ENT), DORL
ENT Specialist, Mumbai  •  28 years experience
What Causes Mouth-Breathing?

An estimated of 10 percent or more children snore for more than 1 night. Snoring results from the obstruction of breath when the air makes its way through the mouth. The air passage of the throat through which the air goes in and out causes the tissue to vibrate causing snore. The sound of the snore totally depends on the amount of air passing through the mouth and the frequency at which the throat is vibrating. Children above the age of three years tend to snore when they are deep in sleep.

Primary and secondary snoring:
Children who are otherwise healthy should not have a snoring problem unless there is some health disorder. However, if loud snoring is observed in otherwise a perfectly healthy kid, seeking medical help is a wise thing to do. In general, primary snoring is defined as a condition which is not associated with other sleep-related disorders such as lung disorder, OASS, inability to sleep for a longer duration etc.

Other possibilities:
It is estimated that close to three percent of the children suffers from breathing problem while sleeping. OSAS is a condition which is characterised by pauses in breathing and gasps along with loud snores. There could be instances where a kids’ muscle relaxes way too much obstructing the air to pass through. The body and the brain are both alerted at this stage. As soon as the brain sends a signal, the body wakes up. Thus, most kids suffering from this disorder are not able to sleep well and tend to feel tired throughout the day.

Common causes of sleep apnea:
Sleep apena is a major cause of snoring. It can be caused because of allergies, obesity, GERD etc. In children sleep, apnea can also be caused by tonsil. Since the tonsil size of children less than 7 years of age tends to be bigger than adult individuals, it causes snoring related problem. Swollen tonsils not only obstruct air but creates other health related problems as well.

Symptoms of sleep apnea during the day and night:

  1. Loud snore
  2. Snorts, gasps, pauses during sleep
  3. Heavy sweat during sleep
  4. Social and behavioural problems
  5. Failure to get up in the morning
  6. A nasal voice
  7. Easily irritated, cranky and aggressive

Relief measure:
The first thing a that a doctor does is a physical exam followed by observing the symptoms of a kid. Primary snorting can be addressed by physical exercise, counselling and breathing exercise. Problems related to apnea are addressed through medicine, counselling, and exercise. Certain dietary restrictions also needed to be followed during this time. However, apena is completely treatable within a certain time frame. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

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