The Relationship between Beauty and Growth of the Face with Nasal Breathing
Updated: Jul 14
I wrote this article to address the underlying problem of the shrinking human jaw compared to the wide jaw of our ancestors which has lead to many health issues including mouth breathing, sleep apnea, malocclusion, cavities, allergies, asthma, jaw dysfunction, overbites and underdeveloped facial growth. My goal is to raise awareness and educate people on nasal breathing, jaw growth and orthotropics. Wouldn't it be cool if we could prevent these issues in future generations? I think there is tremendous opportunity to improve the facial growth potential of humans, which also ties into the current demand of plastic surgery and filler injectables to achieve a more proportioned face. Even if one parent sees this and can check their kid's tongue to make sure it isn't tied and has enough space in the mouth or start seeing a myofunctional therapist, I would be satisfied.
The ideal face is one where the lips are closed, tongue is resting on the roof of your mouth to open your airways and allow for nasal breathing. (I personally was born with a tongue that was tied and I recently had two frenectomies so I have to be intentional and make a conscious effort to have correct oral tongue posture and nasal breathing). For those that understand the importance of a closed mouth and nasal breathing, you may look at the below photos and be like, "her lips do not close naturally," and this is true for me unless I make a conscious effort to close them.
I have had jaw issues for most of my life and I knew the treatments from my dentist and orthodontist were not addressing the issue from a holistic perspective, so I did my own research and that is how I discovered Dr. Michael Mew and Dr. Weston A Price.
The main issue is that dentistry and orthodontics simply address modern problems of cavities, malocclusion, overbites and misaligned teeth that did not exist before western diets replaced traditional diets. Orthotropics, on the other hand, challenges the narrative and asks "why are peoples jaws and teeth crooked to begin with?" and "why can't some people fit all their teeth in their mouth and need to get their wisdom teeth removed?" Orthotropics recognizes that functionality of the jaw, tongue and surrounding muscles are directly synonymous with aesthetics of facial proportions. Yup, that is correct. The functionality of how well your jaw, tongue and breathing work together plays a role in facial growth and proportions that influence how attractive you are. Why do you think filler injections, face lifts and PDO threads are so popular in the jaw line and mid face regions? If you search "jawline filler" on instagram, you can see the before and after. The before image clearly shows a receding jaw line, which is indicative of jaw issues, narrow palates, nasal obstruction and mouth breathing.
The reason why symmetry and forward projection of the face is such a sought-after look is because it indicates that person is breathing well through their nose. Nasal breathers are by default healthier than mouth breathers because they have a higher saturation of oxygen in their blood, synthesize more nitric oxide (a vasodilator) and breathing through the nose kills pathogens, giving them a stronger immune system. As humans, we are subconsciously more attracted to people who we perceive as looking healthy. I can’t say I blame people for wanting to look their best by getting these cosmetic procedures. It is quite possible that their face didn’t grow to its full potential due to mainstream doctors neglecting to treat the tongue/mouth/jaw holistically.
And yes- these cosmetic procedures can temporarily correct the aesthetic aspect of making the face look more structured and proportioned. In the case of a receding jaw and chin, the fillers can add volume to the point where the jaw and chin are projecting forward giving a more ideal looking profile (think Angelina Jolie- who by the look of her jaw and face, is a subconscious nasal breather!). However, the fillers will not address the narrow jaw, lack of tongue space and mouth breathing of this person. I think many of these people who are getting these procedures may not realize that they have a narrow palate/jaw and should be practicing proper tongue posture and nasal breathing. I honestly think that the plastic surgeons/ injectors should be communicating with orthotropics specialists and myofunctional therapists to address the underlying issues that may trigger many to get these procedures in the first place. Even people who need to get nose jobs to correct deviated septums and collapsed nasal valves that interfere with breathing, should also be addressing their jaw and tongue as well. Many people think that the appearance of their face is set by genetics, but your environment (epigenetics) can influence how your face develops particularly from childhood to adulthood and even how it changes throughout the lifespan.
The science of orthotropics recognizes the relationship of proper tongue posture to ideal jaw and facial development: a wide enough maxilla so the tongue can rest on the roof of the palate and wide mandible to allow for horizontal forward growth of the face instead of downward and vertical growth. (People get fillers to give a more forward projection that counteracts this downward growth that is caused by mouth breathing). Orthotropics recognizes the importance of nasal breathing in prevention of blocked airways, deviated septums and sleep apnea (I had to have my deviated septum fixed due to having a tongue tie my entire life, but my jaw and tongue was not addressed when I had this surgery- this is a huge opportunity for plastic surgeons to integrate with orthotropics specialists).
Orthotropics follows the teachings of Dr. Weston A Price who pioneered this topic on evolution of the jaw and through his observations, he showed that modern western diets are what causes narrowing of the jaw,
malocclusion of the teeth, dental caries and mouth breathing. It's not just that the modern western diets of processed foods lack key nutrients that help with bone growth (fat soluble vitamins A, D3 & K2 - all of which are abundant in animal foods), but our ancestors who were raised eating local traditional foods developed their tongue & mastication muscles at an early age by chewing on tougher foods after using their suction muscles when breastfeeding, which trained their tongue. Chewing tougher foods like meats trained their masseter muscles, which pulled on the mandible to grow properly. (This is why they tell women to weight train after menopause- because the surrounding muscles strengthen the bone).
Dr. John and Michael Mew in the United Kingdom practice orthotropics to achieve horizontal forward growth of the face. You can clearly see the aesthetic benefits of using orthotropics in these identical twins. Quinton's face grew more ideally: he has a more pronounced jaw and chin and cheek bones project while Ben's cheeks are more flat and the chin and jaw look receded.