One more trend of TikTok has created problems for society. This time, trend #mouthtaping — or mouth tape in Portuguese — worries doctors, especially in the United States of America.
This new trend claims that closing the mouth with a tape on the lips, forcing a breath with the nose when sleeping, solves breathing problems. However, doctors consider the action dangerous, and can become life-threatening.
The tag “#mouthtaping” has 23 million views across the platform and some videos about the technique have reached millions of likes. TikTokers participating in the challenge claim that the activity helps them keep their mouths closed during sleep and promotes nasal breathing.
benefits and harms
Nasal breathing is a healthy habit that brings numerous benefits. Sleep expert James Wilson, also known as The Sleep Geek, has listed many different advantages of nasal breathing.
“Breathing through your nose is healthier than breathing through your mouth as it filters out foreign particles, humidifies the air you breathe, and breathing through your nose helps dilate your blood vessels, which can help your body circulate blood more efficiently.,” the doctor told Newsweek.
“Nasal breathing also helps prevent tooth decay (yes, really), reduces snoring, makes you less likely to react to allergens, reduces the impact of asthma, and even helps prevent bad breath.”, he added.
However, Wilson emphasized that despite the benefits of nasal breathing, clogging your lips to develop it can have dangerous detrimental effects on your health and well-being.
“Unfortunately, mouth tape is an extreme way to encourage nasal breathing that carries serious health risks.”, he stated. He went on to say that the activity can “contribute to more serious problems such as heart disease, COPD and stroke, especially if applied and you suffer from sleep apnea“.
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Dr. Aarti Grover, medical director of the Sleep Medicine Center at Tufts Medical Center, shared a similar sentiment. She explained that closing the lips can result in lower oxygen intake at night.
“Imagine that you have a blockage in the nasal cavity due to allergies or you are congested and in addition you hold your mouth, it could be problematic because you are not getting enough air from your nose or oral cavity. May result in a person not getting enough oxygen at night”, said the doctor.
She added that lips are too delicate to stick and peel off duct tape every day. She also said that if a person with a covered mouth becomes sick or sick and has to vomit, they risk choking on their own vomit.
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