Many of us focus on areas where we can readily quantify and track our progress, such as how many carbs and calories we consume or how many times we exercise each week, when it comes to improving our health. BUT we do not focus on Deep Breathing Exercises. Reduced and managed stress is an important part of remaining healthy, even if it is more difficult to quantify. According to the National Institute for Mental Health, chronic stress has been related to heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, depression, and anxiety.
It’s crucial to remember that breathing exercises are only one part of a treatment plan. Deep breathing should not be used in place of any of your doctor’s other medications or procedures. To put it another way, deep breathing is not a complementary therapy. This will allow your body to recognise what you’re doing and respond more quickly. Are you ready to take a deep breath and dive right in? Deep breathing has been shown in studies to be beneficial for a variety of health issues. To know more talk to a psychologist right now through Marham. Here are a few illustrations.
1. Lower Blood Pressure
Deep breathing can help people with anxiety drop their blood pressure by 30 points or more, according to Lin. “However, if you talk to them about anything that makes them anxious, their blood pressure will rise again,” she explains. Consistency and regular practise are essential for long-term health benefits, including those for blood pressure, according to Lin.
Slow breathing exercises resulted to small reductions in blood pressure, according to a study published in July 2019 in Complementary Therapy Medicine, which looked at 17 trials with 1,165 participants. Breathing exercises may be an appropriate first treatment for patients with prehypertension or low-risk high blood pressure, according to the authors, especially for those who are hesitant to take medication.
2. Improve Quality of Life In People who’re having Asthma and COPD
Breathing exercises are a nonpharmaceutical method of helping persons with lung diseases like asthma and COPD control some aspects of their illness. According to a Cochrane review released in March 2020, breathing exercises can help with hyperventilation symptoms, lung function, and quality of life in persons with mild to moderate asthma. Breathing exercises do not appear to alleviate asthma symptoms. According to the American Lung Association, diaphragmic breathing — slower, deeper breathing that activates the diaphragm — is frequently taught in COPD pulmonary rehabilitation programmes to help make lungs more efficient and enhance oxygen levels. Discuss your confusion regarding exercises with a psychologist right now through Marham.
According to a systematic review with meta-analysis published in August 2019 in the Annals of Rehabilitation Medicine, diaphragmic breathing can improve breathing and quality of life in people with COPD, especially when used in conjunction with other interventions like pursed lip breathing and exercise. Although it may appear that breathing more deeply and consciously is a simple discipline, the American Lung Association warns that it can take time to master. Start carefully, and don’t try deep breathing initially if you’re out of breath, according to the organisation.
3. Help Manage Symptoms of Depression and Anxiety
According to Dr. Bell, chronic stress is a frequent problem that has gotten worse since the COVID-19 pandemic began. According to him, stress can cause a disruption in typical breathing patterns, which can lead to anxiety and other mental health issues. They can get to start to rebalance their breath system by completing mindful breath exercises, which can lead to improvements in how a person feels and thinks, he says. “The more agitated we are, the more difficult it is to think clearly,” he explains.
Participants in a small study published in June 2017 in Frontiers in Psychology attended 20 sessions teaching belly breath (another term for diaphragmatic breathing) over the course of eight weeks, and their stress hormone cortisol levels were significantly lower and their sustained attention rates were significantly higher than the control group. Cortisol (and other stress hormones) overexposure has been related to an increased risk of sadness and anxiety , according to Mayo Clinic.
4. Reduce Tension to Help With Headaches
According to Lin, calming the sympathetic reaction through deep breathing might help you relax and lessen muscle tension. “There are a few ways in which this could aid with a headache. It can help you relax your neck and shoulders, which may help with headache pain. “You’ll be able to rest better if you’re more relaxed, which will also help you feel better,” she explains. Although practising deep breathing regularly or when you sense a headache coming on may be beneficial, especially when taken with preventative and acute medicine, it is unlikely to help in the middle of a headache. To know more talk to a psychologist right now through Marham.
5. Relieve Some Symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
According to Megan Elizabeth Riehl, PsyD , clinical assistant professor and health psychologist at the University of Michigan Health in Ann Arbor, deep breathing can have digestive benefits. “The physiological movements of the diaphragm can assist release stress in the digestive tract and can help with GERD symptoms, constipation, diarrhoea, and urgency,” she explains.
Because tension can interfere with normal digestion, Lin feels that deep breathing may help with these symptoms. A small trial in adults with IBS that included training in progressive muscle relaxation and diaphragmatic breathing and was published in April 2020 in Frontiers in Psychiatry found that the intervention improved IBS symptoms, depression, and quality of life when compared to a wait-list control.
6. Reduce The Number and Severity of Hot Flashes
According to a study that got published in April 2017 in Maturitas, high levels of cortisol are seen to be associated to hot flashes, a menopause symptom. Paced breathing — deep, steady breathing at a rate of 6 to 8 breaths per minute — has been shown to help minimise hot flashes. Some cancer treatments might cause hot flashes as a side effect . Deep breathing exercises are recommended by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center as a non hormonal technique to assist lessen the severity or amount of hot flashes.
CONSULT WITH A PSYCHOLOGIST FOR ANY QUERY
To know more about how to do deep breathing exercises, consult an expert. Book an appointment now, to answer all your queries related to something that’s bothering you if its about someone who is not accepting their fault. You can book an appointment with the BEST Psychologists in Pakistan through Marham by calling at Marham helpline: 0311-1222398 or by online booking facility through the website or Marham mobile app.
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What are deep breathing exercises good for?
Breathing exercises can help in get rid the lungs of accumulated stale air, raise oxygen levels, and get the diaphragm back to its role of helping you breathe if practiced frequently.
Is taking deep breaths good for your lungs?
Deep breathing (using the diaphragm) restores lung function. Breathing via the nose helps to strengthen the diaphragm and calm and repair the neurological system.
Can deep breathing be harmful?
Hyperventilation is caused by breathing too deeply, too often, or too quickly, and it has dangerous consequences. It seems unlikely that taking a deep breath once in a while or performing a specialized, slow deep breathing method to relieve stress and tension will cause harm.