Tired of waking up feeling wrecked and is if you did not sleep enough – even though you did?
We all know sleep is important for our overall health and wellbeing, but if you are a bad sleeper – or just struggle to feel like you ever get to sleep enough, or good enough, what is there to do?
Many of us are reluctant to go down the slippery slopy route of sleep medication, but what if you feel like you have tried everything else to get a good night’s sleep
Enter mouth taping – the bizarre technique that is currently going viral with fans saying it is giving them the best sleep of their lives.
The idea is that by taping your mouth shut (with porous tape), you will be encouraged to breathe through the nose when you sleep – which is known to be a more effective way for us to breathe.
Wellness and fitness creator @lexfiish recently shared a video on TikTok sharing her mouth taping tip, telling her followers that it helps her “get the deepest sleep you’ll ever experience”.
“Stitch this with something that has improved your overall wellness. [It’s] that simple. I’ll go first – mouth taping. Mouth taping. Try it. You get this on, sleep with it, it prevents you mouth breathing all night. You’re gonna start to get the deepest sleep you’ll ever experience.”
“It’s a little uncomfortable at first and you do have to get used to it, but try it out, and I can share the techniques and the benefits if you’re interested.”
@lexfiish have you tried? #mouthtaping #mouthbreathing #breathe #wellnesstips #wellnesshacks #stitchthis #eveningroutine #wellness #sleeptips ♬ Dreamy – Elijah Lee
Benefits of mouth taping
The TikTok video post was soon flooded with different comments from many who love the technique themselves, explaining it has helped them with quality of sleep, decreased snoring, resulted in better breath, fewer concentration issues and better health overall.
Speaking to Glamour magazine, Dr Lindsay Browning, a psychologist and neuroscientist, explains that it is no wonder people are seeing benefits, as breathing through your mouth during the night can result in an increased likelihood of snoring, bad breath and a dry mouth in the morning.
“Breathing through your nose is also preferable to mouth breathing because your nose has hairs that filter out allergens during the night and humidifies the air breathed in,” Dr Browning says.
“Naturally, people tend to breathe through their mouth when their nasal passages are blocked, such as when they have congestion.”
However, she is also keen to point out that even though breathing through your nose when you are sleeping is preferable, it does not necessarily mean that mouth taping is the way – or indeed, is for everyone.
Mouth taping – how safe is it?
According to the US Sleep Foundation, mouth taping for sleep has only been studied in a couple of small scientific experiments, so its purported benefits are largely anecdotal at this point.
As for side effects, these have not yet been fully studied, but anecdotally reported side effects include irritation around the lips, disrupted sleep, anxiety for those who feel uncomfortable having their mouths tapes off – or worse, actual difficulty breathing.
“There are possible risks associated with mouth taping, including irritation at the adhesive site and pain when the tape is removed, Dr Browning explains.
Another important risk, Dr Browning points out, is that if you tape your mouth shut, but have unknown nasal congestion, you may struggle to breathe during the night which could turn out to actually be very dangerous.
“If you did want to try mouth taping then it would be a good idea to test taping your mouth shut during the daytime to see if this might be an issue for you.”
A safer way to test out if breathing more through the nose will benefit you, could be to try out nasal strips. These will simply help open your nostrils more, and in doing so, encourage you to breathe more through the nose and less through the mouth at night, without completely restricting breath going in and out of your mouth.
Have YOU tried mouth taping? Did it have any effect on your sleep?