Does Mouth Tape Work?

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Do you have trouble with snoring at night? Mouth taping has been suggested as a solution, but how effective is it really and does it even work?
Upset woman with closed eyes and sealed mouth with tape

Does Mouth Tape Work?

Snoring can be one of the most frustrating things to deal with both as the one snoring and as someone in the same household. Snoring can be extremely loud at times and the noise is just irritating enough that it prevents us from sleeping. To make things worse, snoring isn’t caused by just one thing. In fact, it’s incredibly common and usually not caused by anything serious which means that people don’t really feel the need to fix it.

But what if there was a simple way to fix your snoring with a simple piece of tape?

Mouth taping is one of the more recent home remedies that supposedly helps you stop mouth breathing when you sleep. In many cases, mouth taping has been touted as a great way to overcome snoring, but it’s also useful for dealing with allergies and even improving oral health concerns like bad breath. But how effective is mouth taping and is it something that you should really try? We’ll be exploring this practice in more detail and if there is any evidence of it actually working.

woman sleeping on bed under blankets

Source: https://unsplash.com/photos/rUc9hVE-L-E (CC0)

What is mouth taping?

First, let’s define what mouth taping is and how it works.

Mouth taping involves literally taping your mouth shut before you sleep. The idea is to keep your mouth closed to prevent sleep disruptions, reduce snoring, lower blood pressure, and potentially improve brain function. If you breathe with your mouth when you sleep, then this should theoretically encourage nose breathing when you sleep, thus reducing the impact of snoring and also offering some benefit when it comes to allergies.

But why breathe through just your nose? What are the benefits of mouth taping as opposed to breathing through both your nose and mouth? Could it assist with breathing issues? There are a lot of questions that one might have regarding mouth taping, so let’s tackle them one by one.

Why breathe through just your nose?

Most people breathe through a mix of both their nose and mouth. For example, if someone has severe nasal congestion then they’ll switch to breathing through their mouth to get enough oxygen into their lungs.

However, breathing through the nose offers health benefits and performs many important functions such as making the air more humid and also preventing your sinuses from drying out. It also assists in balancing the pH levels in your mouth, thus dealing with conditions like tooth decay improving your oral health. You could perform nasal breathing exercises to help, but mouth taping could be a more immediate solution for now.

And when it comes to sleeping, nose breathing reduces the chance of you snoring at night. Again, this is one of the biggest reasons why mouth taping is so popular and also the main reason why people try it in the first place.

Are there dangers associated with mouth taping?

While it might sound scary to tape your mouth shut before you sleep, your body is perfectly capable of adapting to breathing through just your nose when you’re asleep. The most common side effect is that you might feel a bit of irritation around your mouth, or you might have some sticky residue on your face the next day. Some people might also find that it’s harder to fall asleep because they can’t help but feel the tape on their mouths.

Thankfully, these are the only major side effects of sleep mouth taping. While there’s definitely a chance that mouth taping could cause a more serious side effect, there has been no evidence to date to suggest this. However, take this statement with a grain of salt as there haven’t been many clinical trials done to prove that there are no serious side effects.

Do you need special tape for mouth taping?

Mouth tape does actually exist and it’s often sold as sleep tape. However, it’s certainly not required and any kind of surgical tape can be a good pick for mouth taping. However, we advise against using packing tape or other forms of surgical tape that aren’t meant for use on the body. There’s a high chance that it might irritate your skin and some tape can be a little too strong for use on our skin.

Does mouth tape work?

There’s no denying that mouth taping helps you breathe more through your nose as opposed to your mouth, but does that really help you stop snoring, or does it just make it harder for you to sleep?

First, let’s discuss snoring and its relationship to sleep apnea. Snoring is usually associated with mild obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), a health condition where you repeatedly stop and start breathing while you sleep. If your snoring is caused by OSA then mouth tape will have little effect on your snoring. This is because the snoring in this case is caused by pauses in your sleep and not because of your mouth breathing.

If you’re considering mouth taping as a solution for snoring or any other condition, then we highly recommend that you speak with your doctor first. They can recommend alternative treatments to help you deal with your snoring or other related health conditions that you might be experiencing.

More research needs to be carried out on mouth taping before doctors can confidently suggest it as an effective method of treating your snoring. However, there’s no denying that it encourages nose breathing, but your snoring might not be caused by that alone. While initial research has shown that mouth tape will help with snoring and tiredness, your mileage may vary.

Conclusion

Mouth taping may sound a bit strange or even scary, but the side effects are minor as long as you use the right kind of surgical tape and practice mouth tape safety. As long as you let your doctor know and consult them before trying it, you might find it to be an effective solution for treating your snoring problem and getting a better night’s sleep. It could also help you sleep better at night, and there’s a chance it’ll even improve your oral health.

So if you want to encourage nose breathing at night, keeping your mouth shut with tape could be a great solution. While it may be preferred to practice breathing through your nose instead, mouth tape can provide you with a good night’s sleep and several health benefits. It’s one of the most convenient sleep aids for getting better sleep.

Ryan Abbott

Ryan Abbott

Founder of Urban Ice Tribe & Urban Ice Gear

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