Causes of Trouble Breathing Through the Mouth


Many diseases or conditions can cause trouble breathing through the mouth, and many of these cases can be severe and require treatment. Any difficulty breathing usually requires some type of medical attention, so it is important to pay attention to any other symptoms that might accompany the troubled breathing in order to have an accurate diagnosis. If you have trouble breathing through your mouth, check with your doctor or an emergency room.


  • One common cause of trouble breathing through the mouth is asthma. Asthma causes the airways to swell, causing mild to severe trouble breathing along with other symptoms such as coughing, wheezing and chest tightness. Trouble breathing through the mouth caused by asthma can occur at any time since the disease has no cure, but most asthma sufferers have certain triggers that can make the problem worse. Common triggers include airborne allergens, food allergens, illnesses, stress, environmental irritants, stress, weather and exercise. Treat any trouble breathing through the mouth caused by one of these triggers with your normal asthma medications or see a doctor immediately.


  • Severe cases of pneumonia can cause trouble breathing through the mouth. Pneumonia is an infection that attacks the lungs, initially causing cold-like symptoms such as sneezing and coughing. As it progresses, a fever develops and the cough worsens; if the infection spreads to the spongy tissue of the lungs they can become stiff and cause significant trouble breathing. At this stage, the trouble breathing through the mouth can be so severe that the patient's skin will turn purple and they will start to have chest pain. If pneumonia is the suspected cause of trouble breathing though the mouth, seek medical attention immediately as some types of pneumonia can develop serious or fatal complications.


  • Allergies are another common cause of trouble breathing through the mouth. While most mild allergy symptoms remain localized and do not affect breathing, both moderate and severe allergy reactions can possibly cause trouble breathing as the allergen spreads through the body. Trouble breathing associated with moderate allergy symptoms should be addressed immediately, but is not life-threatening. However, trouble breathing through the mouth associated with a severe allergic reaction, also known as anaphylaxis, is life-threatening and requires emergency medical treatment. Other symptoms of anaphylaxis include swelling, abdominal pain, intestinal distress and dizziness due to lack of oxygen. Common causes of allergies include plants, bee stings, animals, latex, mold, medication and certain types of food (especially nuts).

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