What is mouth taping and can it improve sleep?

Jonathan Warren

Author: Jonathan Warren



What is mouth taping and can it improve sleep?

A small piece of porous tape designed to keep your mouth shut during the night is currently taking the world of social media by storm. As wild as it sounds, mouth taping for sleep is genuinely a thing and is the latest trend geared towards better sleep. 

But what actually is mouth taping? How does it work? Is it safe or dangerous? And could it actually help you improve your quality of sleep? Here, we uncover everything you need to know about mouth taping, the benefits and risks, and alternative options if your sleep quality is in need of some TLC.

What is mouth taping for sleep?

A TikTok sensation, mouth taping involves using a piece of tape to keep the mouth closed during sleep. The tape is typically porous, so that it can be used on human skin, and is placed vertically across both lips.

What is mouth taping used for?

Boosting sleep quality is the ultimate goal for mouth tape users out there. But how is it supposed to work?

By keeping the mouth shut during sleep, mouth tape wearers breathe through their nose. Nasal breathing comes with a wide range of benefits which can result in improved sleep quality. As air travels through our noses, our nasal passage naturally filters the air we breathe, helping to remove allergens or dust and can even boost oxygen circulation. Put simply, breathing through your nose is more beneficial than breathing through our mouths.

Is mouth taping dangerous?

Like with any medical aids, mouth taping is not without risks and although being widely promoted on social media, there are very few studies into the impact of mouth tape. Approach with caution is the order of the day.

Some experts say that although mouth tape is designed to promote nasal breathing, it could cause your breathing to be obstructed and sufferers of sleep apnoea should steer clear of mouth tape altogether, as it could worsen the symptoms. If you experience difficulty with nasal breathing, mouth taping is also likely to lessen your chances at having an uninterrupted night's sleep.

Having your mouth taped shut could also feel very uncomfortable and panic-inducing to some sleepers. Depending on the material, mouth tape could also cause skin irritation and indeed may be painful when you are prising it off your lips in the morning.

Given there are plenty of other means of elevating your quality of sleep and alleviating snoring, we don't think that buying mouth tape should be at the top of your list of things to try to increase your chances of catching higher calibre sleep.

Does mouth taping work to help your sleep?

The main benefit associated with mouth tape is the encouragement of nasal breathing which can help reduce snoring. Snoring is strongly linked to the condition obstructive sleep apnoea, where a person's breathing nearly or entirely stops for a short period of time, and other health conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure and arrhythmia. So, reducing snoring is a good thing (and may also be great news for your partner if your snores are keeping them awake at night!).

Nasal breathing can also help boost the quality of your sleep as breathing through your nose carries air more effectively into your lungs and will help to reduce the chances of you waking with a very dry mouth, which can make us all feel a bit groggy and unrested.

However, whilst mouth taping can help boost nasal breathing, it is unlikely to be a go-to answer for those looking to increase their chances of falling asleep quickly and enjoying a deep, restorative sleep (and there's plenty of other ways to help without taping your mouth shut).

Benefits of mouth taping

The key benefit of mouth taping is that it promotes nasal breathing which has a variety of benefits. Nasal breathing helps to filter the air we breathe and carries air into our lungs more effectively than mouth breathing.

Mouth taping can also have a side benefit of reducing dry mouth which we can all experience in the morning. This could also lead to less instances of having bad breath and mouth tapers claim that wearers can experience decreased chances of gum disease and cavities.

Alternatives to mouth taping

Nose strips, mouth guards and head straps are some alternatives to mouth taping which are focused on reducing snoring and, as a result, improving sleep quality. However, if you stumbled across mouth tape when scouring the internet for sleep-boosting tips, then there are plenty of other ways to improve your sleep which don't involve taping or wearing any other medical device.

At Time4Sleep, it would be silly for us to overlook the obvious for starters: having a really good bed and mattress! Before you look for any gadgets to help with your sleep, you need a proper foundation. That's where our selection of beds and mattresses comes in, serving up quality nights of sleep time and time again.

Having a calming bedroom space which is the right temperature for sleep can increase the chances of you enjoying a deep sleep. As can using meditation or sleep apps, having a smart lamp to naturally dim during the evening to help your circadian rhythm or introducing a soothing face care or pre-sleep stretching routine. In short, there's plenty of ways to improve your sleep quality before resorting to taping your mouth shut!

Where snoring is a cause for concern, then addressing any underlying medical conditions should be a primary consideration. Assessing your sleeping position and considering your alcohol intake (which can increase the chances of snoring) could be more beneficial than mouth tape ever will be. You can even check out our own blog on how to stop snoring for more hints and tips.

Searching for more ways to boost your sleep quality?

Our Time4Sleep blog has bags of information all designed to give you all the information you need to get the dreamiest night's sleep you've ever had. Whether it's figuring out the best temperature for sleep, knowing what you should drink before bed or finding plants for the bedroom to improve your sleep, we've got you covered.