I Can’t Breathe Through My Nose: Is This Bad for Meditation?


Good morning. I have some problem to breath through the nose (my nostrils are not completely free because of some cartilages grown inside...most of the time I breath through the mouth. Breathing from the nose cause me some strain). I think that this problem doesn’t allow me to reach a deep relaxation/concentration during meditation. Do you have any hint/technic to overcame this problem?

Thanks in advance


—Stefano, Giacomel


Dear Stefano,

Yes, it’s ideal to breathe through the nose. In addition to the well known physiological reasons for doing so, nose breathing helps you keep your awareness at—and stimulates—the spiritual eye, which accelerates your spiritual progress. However, there are still things you can do to meditate well while breathing through your mouth. Here are a few simple thoughts:

  • Keep your breaths smooth and relatively shallow (not deep breaths), with equal inhalations and exhalations. Don’t force the breath to be shallow; let that happen through relaxation and concentration.
  • Don’t allow tension to enter your breathing; keep the inside of your mouth—and entire head—as relaxed as possible, and let the muscles of your torso (especially, the diaphragm) do the work of breathing.
  • Since you won’t have nose breathing to help you concentrate at the spiritual eye (as we do in the Ananda Meditation techniques), it might require a bit more effort on your part to concentrate there. But you can do it.
  • Don’t feel bad about having to breathe through your mouth. Just do what you can. Great saints have found God despite much greater obstacles than that.
  • Have you ever looked into surgery to correct the situation? If that is not possible, then try to accept this as the situation that God has given you, and move forward in the best way you can.

Best wishes for your practice.