Updated: Jul 26
You might catch yourself even when you don't have a cold just breathing in and out of your mouth. Or, you may be part of the 25-50% of the population that habitually breathe through their mouth. Either way, you would benefit by altering the pattern of mouth breathing.
Fortunately, habits can be changed and the lost art of nasal breathing can be relearned.
For a long explanation why this is important, please enjoy the following podcast by Dr. Rangan Chatterjee and James Nester: https://youtu.be/woyIhwomy1U. For the Cliff note version, heed this: When you mouth breathe it is like having your lungs on the outside of your body. The lungs, an internal organ, should not have continual exposure to allergens, chemicals & environmental toxins. This is especially important if you are diagnosed with emphysema, asthma, or allergies. Retraining the brain and nasal passageways is possible for all. Nasal breathing will bring more energy and increased vitality. The rest of the body, including the pelvic floor, functions better when there is nasal breath patterns.
So, pick a time in your day that you are stationery. Maybe at a red light? Maybe during bathroom breaks? Pick the time and make an intention that when you sit there you practice breathing only through your nose. You can blow your nose before you start. Soften your eyes and relax your jaw when you are practicing this breath. You can take a break if you start to feel panic from the slight restriction from this new way of breathing. If you start to feel a bit of panic, just do 3 closed-mouth breaths. Increase to 6 rounds. Do this every time you stop at a red light or go to the bathroom. Pretty soon you will notice other times of day to make this slight change: it will be easier.
P.S. At 15.25 min into the podcast there is night-time help: information on "sleep tape".