Mouth breathing can seem like a small issue, but it can actually lead to a range of problems, from bad breath and difficulty sleeping to developmental issues in children. If you notice that your child is constantly breathing through their mouth, it’s important to take action. Here are 5 ways to combat mouth breathing in kids and ensure that your child is breathing properly.
1. Identify the Root Cause
The first step to combating mouth breathing is determining the root cause. Some common causes include allergies, enlarged tonsils or adenoids, or a deviated septum. Once you identify the cause, you can work with your child’s pediatrician to formulate a treatment plan. Treatment may involve medication, surgery or lifestyle changes like avoiding certain foods or environmental allergens.
Chronic nasal congestion may be a cause of mouth breathing in children. If structural and allergic causes have been ruled out, it may be a good idea to test for food sensitivities. Food sensitivities develop as a result of a slightly different immune response than allergies. A naturopathic doctor or functional medicine doctor can requisition a blood test that will identify any food sensitivities in your child. Sensitivities will often resolve after 3-months of abstinence at which time these foods may be re-introduced into the diet.
2. Practicing Breathing Exercises
Teaching kids proper breathing techniques can help them switch from mouth breathing to breathing through their nose. Encourage them to take long, deep breaths through their nose and exhale slowly through their mouth. You can also make it into a fun game by challenging them to see how long they can hold a deep breath in their nose or how long they can exhale.
A fantastic resource for nasal breathing exercises as well as some of the scientific literature around mouth breathing vs. nasal breathing can be found through the Buteyko Clinic
3. Promote Good Sleep Hygiene
Many kids breathe through their mouth while sleeping, so it’s crucial to establish good sleep hygiene to prevent mouth breathing before it starts. Make sure your child is sleeping on their back or side, as sleeping on the stomach can encourage mouth breathing. You may also consider using a humidifier, which can help to keep sinuses moisturized and reduce inflammation.
Here is a checklist for establishing good sleep hygiene in kids:
✅ Establish a consistent bedtime routine and consistent wake-up time every day.
✅ Avoid caffeinated drinks, large meals, and vigorous exercise late in the day.
✅ Create a calm, relaxing atmosphere in the bedroom by dimming lights and avoiding screens.
✅ Avoid napping during the day. If naps are necessary, keep them short (15-30 minutes) and at the same time each day.
✅ Keep bedroom temperature comfortable. A cool but not cold room of around 65 degrees is ideal for sleep.
✅ Make sure your child’s mattress is comfortable and supportive to ensure quality rest.
✅ Exercise regularly, although not too close to bedtime as this can make it harder to fall asleep quickly.
✅ Encourage your child to find activities that help them relax before bedtime such as reading or taking a warm bath or shower in preparation for sleep
4. Maintain Proper Oral Hygiene
Mouth breathing can cause dry mouth, which can lead to a range of oral health problems. Encourage your child to brush their teeth twice daily and to floss regularly to remove any debris that may have accumulated between their teeth. Also, make sure they stay hydrated so that their mouth stays moist and saliva can flow normally.
5. Be a Positive Role Model
Lastly, it’s important to lead by example. Kids are extremely observant, so if they see their parents breathing through their mouth, it can become normalized. Pay attention to your own breathing habits and make sure you practice good nasal breathing techniques in front of your kids. You can even lead by example by doing breathing exercises or attending yoga classes together.
Mouth breathing may seem like a small issue, but it can lead to a range of problems for kids. By taking action early and addressing the root cause, you can help your child learn better breathing techniques and combat mouth breathing. Encouraging proper nasal breathing techniques, practicing good sleep hygiene, promoting oral health, and being a positive role model are all excellent strategies for combatting mouth breathing in children. If you’re worried about your child’s breathing habits, talk to their naturopath or pediatrician to determine the best course of action.
When it comes to treating constipation in children, parents often feel overwhelmed and may not know where to start. Constipation can be a serious health concern for kids if left untreated, so the good news is that there are a number of natural approaches that can help bring relief. With some dietary changes, supplementation, and lifestyle adjustments, you can create a custom treatment plan designed specifically for your child’s needs. In this blog post we will discuss these different methods so that you have all the information you need when considering what type of approach might work best for your little one!
Overview of Constipation in Kids
Constipation in kids can be a very concerning issue. It can cause discomfort and irritation, as well as interfere with appetite, sleep, and overall health. Constipation can be caused by inadequate diets, lack of exercise, anxiety, and other factors. Parents should ensure their children maintain a balanced diet that includes fiber-rich foods such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains. Increasing physical activity is also important for keeping the digestive system healthy. Regular exercise also helps alleviate stress and consequently reduce constipation-causing anxiety among children. Additionally, parents should make sure kids have enough rest to keep their bodies relaxed thus preventing constipation from developing in the first place. If dietary changes and lifestyle adjustments do not improve constipation symptoms then supplementation may be necessary in order to restore regular bowel movements again.
Causes of Constipation in Children
Constipation in children is a common complaint but, fortunately, there are many natural and effective approaches to treating it. Diet is often the primary culprit behind constipation in kids; foods high in fats, processed carbohydrates and protein can slow digestion, while regular exercise and an increase of fibre has been proven to stimulate proper elimination. In addition, food sensitivities and levels of anxiety should not be ignored: both can have a significant effect on digestive health. By addressing diet and other potential lifestyle factors with these helpful tips, children suffering from constipation will eventually experience relief and have their digestive systems back up to speed.
Dietary Changes to Help Treat Constipation in Kids
Eating the right foods and drinks is a natural, effective way of relieving constipation in kids. Soluble fibre helps to soften stool by absorbing water and keeping it in the gut longer. Oatmeal, legumes, berries, chia, nuts and seeds are all sources of soluble fibre. Insoluble fibre adds bulk to stools and increases the frequency at which they can pass through your child’s gut. Foods rich in insoluble fibres include wholegrain cereals, wheat bran, vegetables and fruit skins. Alongside fibre-rich foods, be sure that your child is staying hydrated with plenty of water throughout the day. Two liters of fluids in the first 10 hours of the day is recommended. Lastly, adding prebiotic fibres such as onions, garlic, green bananas, apples or asparagus to their meals can also help them treat their constipation naturally by encouraging healthy bacteria growth in the gut.
Natural Remedies for Constipation in Children
Constipation in children can be distressing and uncomfortable. Fortunately, there are a range of natural remedies that can help alleviate the problem, such as massage, dietary changes and supplementation, acupuncture, and herbal remedies. Massage on the abdomen can help to relieve constipation by providing gentle stimulation of digestive organs. Dietary changes should include increased intake of fiber-rich foods such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains to prevent future bouts of constipation in your child. Supplementation with probiotics may also be beneficial in re-establishing healthy bacterial balance and restoring regularity within the gut flora. Acupuncture has been used for centuries for its restorative qualities and treating various aches, pains and bodily ailments including constipation. Herbal remedies are also available such as chamomile tea or lemon balm to help promote digestion.
Supplements for Constipation Relief in Kids
For constipation relief in children, natural supplementation may be an effective approach. Magnesium citrate is one of the most commonly used supplements to support regular and healthy elimination in kids. Butyrate, sunfibre, FOS and acacia are also helpful for improving stool consistency. Psyllium husk is a great source of soluble fibre which helps keep things moving along smoothly. Probiotics like Lactobacillus reuteri or Bifidobacterium infantis are beneficial in keeping beneficial bacteria levels balanced in the intestines. These methods may offer gentle but potent relief for constipation sufferers without harsh side effects associated with over-the-counter medications.
When to See a Doctor for Treatment of Constipation in Children
While constipation in kids is often treated with natural approaches, at times parents should seek medical attention. If your child has a bloody stool, complains of pain, or has not had a bowel movement in 4 days, it’s time to make an appointment for your child to see a doctor. Mucus and streaks in the stool can also be signs of more serious underlying issues that require professional care. Additionally, if you observe any hemorrhoids near the anus, then it is recommended that you take your child to the doctor right away.
Constipation can be a difficult issue for kids to deal with, causing discomfort and pain. Thankfully, there are many potential treatments that can help, such as dietary changes and natural processes like supplementation. If you have a child struggling with constipation, it’s important to keep track of their diet, identify any potential issues in their environment or recent lifestyle changes that might trigger the problem, and look into different supplements that may provide relief. However, if all else fails and you still can’t find an effective solution to the problem, it’s best to seek medical advice from your doctor. I hope that this blog post gave you more insight into the causes and treatments of constipation in children so that you’ll know what to do should your own little one start having issues. For more information or to book an appointment regarding constipation relief in kids, please contact me – I’m always here to help!
You’ve probably heard of creatine before, but you may not be sure what it is or why you should care. Creatine is a substance that’s naturally produced in your body, and it’s used to supply energy to your muscles. It can also be found in foods like red meat and fish. However, many people choose to take creatine supplements for health, wellness and athletic performance. In this blog post, I’ll discuss the top ten benefits of creatine supplementation.
1. Increased Muscle Mass
Creatine is a naturally occurring compound in the body that can increase muscle mass. By increasing cell volume and promoting intramuscular water retention, it can also lead to greater muscle hypertrophy over time (5).
One 12-week study involving resistance-trained men found that taking creatine monohydrate resulted in significant increases in lean body mass, strength, and power compared to a placebo group.
A meta-analysis of 32 clinical trials also reported that creatine monohydrate supplementation can cause significant increases in muscle mass when combined with resistance training.
2. Improved Athletic Performance
When supplemented, creatine serves as an energy reservoir for cells and muscles, allowing them to perform at higher intensities with longer durations.
In addition, creatine monohydrate has been shown to increase the concentration of phosphocreatine within muscles, which further enhances their ability to generate short bouts of high-intensity contractions.
Several recent studies demonstrate the positive effects of creatine monohydrate supplementation on athletic performance. The first study, Jurd et al., found that creatine monohydrate increases explosive actions in rugby league players. Participants received either 0.3 g/kg of creatine monohydrate or placebo daily for 28 days.
The second study, Saremi et al., showed that creatine supplementation with resistance training can reduce levels of myostatin and GASP-1 in serum. Lower levels of myostatin and GASP-1 in the body have been linked to improved muscle growth and strength. Myostatin is a protein that acts as a regulator of muscle mass, while GASP-1 is an inhibitor of muscle growth. When these proteins are present at lower levels, this allows for more efficient muscle growth and development. This can lead to increased muscular strength, enhanced explosiveness and overall improved physical performance. The participants took 5 g/day of creatine monohydrate.
Finally, Volek et al. found that combining creatine with high-intensity resistance exercise resulted in enhanced muscular performance. In this study the participants were given 0.3 g/kg of creatine monohydrate over a 5-day period.
Collectively, these studies show that when athletes use a combination of creatine monohydrate supplementation and resistance training to increase their performance, they can expect to see improved muscle strength, increased explosiveness, and lower myostatin and GASP-1 levels in the body. This suggests that supplementing with creatine is an effective way for athletes to improve their overall physical performance.
3. Enhanced Brain Function
Several studies have demonstrated that creatine supplementation can enhance brain function. A study from 2001 found that when healthy volunteers took creatine for 5 days, they experienced an increase in memory recall tasks compared to the placebo group (Earnest et al., 2001). Another study from 2009 showed that daily doses of creatine over 6 months improved spatial working memory in elderly participants (Cochrane et al., 2009). Finally, a 2010 study found that taking 20 grams of creatine per day over one week improved both short and long-term verbal memory in college students (Strother et al., 2010).