Breath Work

Hey everyone, and Happy New Year! I hope everyone has been staying healthy and dancing to their beat. Today, we will talk about something a little different but needed as we start the year 2021. As soon as we are conceived, life slowly starts, and, before we know it, we get our lungs. As babies and young children, we are molded into the people we are to become. It is said that the correct way of breathing is deep breathing—breath deep down into your abdomen. Throughout this post, we will discuss all the key points to inform you of what you need to know.

As children, we learn things like using the bathroom, walking, talking, etc. Sadly, we learn a few other stuff: anxiety, sadness, angry, and almost every emotion. I know by now you’re thinking, well, what about it? Well, as we get older, most adults stop breathing deep down in their abdomen. We call this breathing shallow breathing, which is faster-paced breathing, which delivers less air per breath to our lungs and other organs. We take more frequent breaths, which may constrict blood vessels. A chronic undersupply of oxygen can contribute to fatigue, depression, stress, anxiety, and phobias. It may also cause PMS, cramps, headaches, migraines, high blood pressure, allergies, asthma, and insomnia. Now I know you are now wondering, well, what causes the switch, and no worries, I will explain. Typically, a healthy person will take between 12 to 20 breaths per minute. Tachypnea is identified when the average number of breaths exceeds 20 breaths per minute.

So, what happens when we tense up and start breathing shallowly when under stress, having a panic attack, or even feeling a strong emotion? We start breathing heavy, sweating, all kinds of things: your diaphragm, the internal muscle between the chest and stomach, contracts the airways, which then shrinks the space in your chest. It sounds scary, but these are the facts of life. And of course, we will discuss some ways to help with your breathing and keep yourself calm. It’s important to know that shallow breathing is not the same thing as shortness of breath. Shallow breathing isn’t considered dyspnea if the person is comfortable performing daily tasks. Shallow breathing can become shortness of breath when normal tasks are no longer possible or if feelings of anxiousness start to occur. This post isn’t meant to scare anyone; inform is all.

The perfect example of fantastic breathing is a newborn. They naturally practice deep, or diaphragmatic, breathing by using the diaphragm, a muscle under the lungs, to pull air into the lungs. Visually, you’ll see the belly expand and chest rise as they inhale air through the nose and into the lungs. As they exhale, the belly contracts. Long-term shallow breathing can seriously affect our health. To practice breathing correctly, lie on your back with one hand on your stomach and one hand on your chest. Breathe in profoundly while pushing out your stomach as far as you can. The hand on your stomach will move out, and the hand on your chest will remain still. When you exhale, you will feel your stomach pulling back in. Both your chest and shoulders should stay relaxed and still.

On the other hand, diaphragmatic breathing can lower blood pressure, reduce heart rate, relax muscles, decrease stress, and increase energy levels. Deep breathing grounds us as well. If you have diabetes, low blood sugar, or kidney disease, don’t practice any new things without talking to a doctor or trusted physician. 

Causes:

  • Asthma 
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD).
  • Heart attack
  • Interstitial lung disease

Other ways to learn how to breathe correctly can try meditation, yoga, finding a physical therapist, or a psychotherapist. Youtube and Google have lots of options, as well. 

Books to check out ( Breath by the book, imagine, branch out).

As always, if you have any questions, please ask below. 

Fin:

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