The nose is important for the humidification, heating and cleaning of the inhaled air. If the nose is clogged and can only be breathed through the mouth, these favorable properties will decay and complaints may arise. It is therefore important to clear the nasal pathway.

If you can not breathe through the nose, you obviously have to do that through the mouth. This can have various consequences in the long term. The mouth will dry out. As a result, there is less saliva in the mouth so that there is much less swallowing. As a result, the Eustachian tube, which connects the nasal cavity to the middle ear, is not opened and cleaned enough. This increases the chance of middle ear infections, as well as other health problems such as gum disease and bronchitis.

Girl covers nose with hand showing that something stinks isolated on gray background
Four steps

If a nose is blocked, it is advisable to release the nasal path as quickly as possible. This can be done in four steps:

1. Sit down and breathe in and out quietly through your nose (try it, even if it is difficult). Breathe in and out three times.

2. After the third exhalation, close the nose with thumb and forefinger (do not squeeze all the air out of the lungs!).

3. Kink your head and / or move your body while waiting for the inspiratory pulse.

4. When you feel the need to breathe, release the nose and breathe in and out through your nose. Do this until your breathing is calm again (in the beginning this will be a bit tricky).

If the nose is still blocked after this, repeat the procedure above until the nose path is completely free again.


Buteyko Breathing Exercise

An extensive explanation of this method can be seen below as part of the ‘Buteyko Breathing Exercise for Adults’. Expert Patrick McKeown gives an explanation in this video.


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