James Nestor authored a new book called “Breathe” which seems like a really interesting study on the significant importance of nasal breathing at all times, all day long. He was recently on the Joe Rogan podcast: http://podcasts.joerogan.net/podcasts/james-nestor
He performed a fascinating experiment – reminiscent of the “Primate Experiments on Oral Respiration” study from a few decades ago (https://buteykoclinic.com/docs/Primate-Experiments-on-Oral-Respiration-Harvold.pdf) … where basically, he agreed to have his nasal passages plugged up for 10 days … and they measured the symptoms he had as a result. Much like the primates who saw significant facial and dental/oral adaptions and changes … he noted that within a couple days he was snoring a few hours a night … then was snoring all night … and then developed sleep apnea.
So, from healthy to some level of sleep apnea … within 10 days … just because nasal breathing is off.
It’s really fascinating if you stop and think about that … presumably if he didn’t have sleep apnea before his experiment, then he had nothing wrong with his tongue or his mouth being too small (extraction/retraction orthodontics), nothing with airways in the neck being too small, he wasn’t overweight with a size 17″+ neck, etc. etc.
For any and all here who suffer from OSA, I would definitely recommend picking up Dr. Steven Park’s free e-Book on nasal breathing and stuffiness … and things you can try to do to resolve it. It has opened up an entirely new world of potential things for me to look into in regards to my OSA, as I am now recognizing that at least part of it may be due to very weak nostrils that are unable to cope with the “negative pressure” created during inhale. I’m severe OSA (in-lab AHI of 41) and last night I tried wearing some nasal dilators for about 3 hours of my sleep (along with some lip tape) and no CPAP. Looking at my logging pulseoximeter … it looks like I had about 12 instances of SPO2 dropping 4% or more … over a period of 3 hours. So a crude AHI calculation for that would be about 4.
There’s more testing and investigating I still need to do, but I would really encourage everyone who I see post here who says “my nose is just always stuffed” to not just write that off as just “that’s just the way things are for me” and seriously look into anything and everything you can to try to resolve that. And if you don’t believe me – just read that primate experiment white paper, and see what happened to those poor chimps after they couldn’t breathe through their noses for 2 years. Their faces and mouths were a wreck in an attempt to adapt/cope.
Oh, and absolutely do not abuse nasal sprays as your means to solve them. Because guess what? Over enough time, those can create a perforation in your septum. Wanna guess how I know that? Yeah…