According to statistics, anxiety is the most prevalent mental health disorder in the US, with 40 million American adults affected by the illness each year.
While anxiety is the body’s way of responding to stress, sometimes it can get overwhelming to a point where it starts taking a toll on one’s health and everyday life. It may cause one to feel unbearably uncomfortable and distressed.
Since an anxiety attack is often marked by chest pains, heart palpitation, and a choking sensation, experts usually recommend specific breathing exercises to cope with the onset of an attack.
Here are a few promising breathing exercises you can try the next time it all starts feeling like too much.
Often referred to as the relaxing breath, this breathing technique is essentially a tranquilizer that helps calm the nervous system. It acts as a quick fix in case of a sudden anxiety attack and can be performed anywhere while sitting or lying down.
· Touch the tip of your tongue to the back of your front upper teeth;
· Breathe out completely from the mouth— making an audible whoosh sound;
· Then close the mouth and inhale through the nose, counting to 4 in your head;
· Then hold the breath and count to 7;
· Then let out your breath, through the mouth, while counting to 8; don’t forget the whooshing sound;
· You can inhale and continue this a couple of times more.
Belly breathing is another convenient exercise that can help to reduce stress and hence the anxiety. In fact, experts recommend 20 to 30 minutes of this type of breathing every day to keep stress levels in check.
· Find a quiet and comfortable spot;
· Sit on a chair, or cross-legged, or lie down with a small pillow supporting your head and one under the knees;
· Place one of the hands below the ribcage (on belly) and another on the upper chest;
· Let your belly muscles completely relax;
· Breathe in very slowly through the nose—you should feel the stomach rising and then falling inward;
· Purse your lips and exhale very slowly—the hand on your chest should remain fairly still.
This exercise can be repeated based on your personal capacity. You can do a few sets throughout the day as well.
Our stress and anxiety are often caused by things that have already happened in the past or by future events that we’re skeptical about. Mindful breathing is all about being mindful of the present. It’s a form of meditation and can be very relaxing.
· Find a place and position—lying or sitting— you’re most comfortable in;
· Let yourself inhale through the nose while your tummy expands;
· Then slowly breathe out through your mouth;
· Form a pattern, and calmly focus on what you’re doing;
· Make a note of how your body responds to the breathing;
· You will still have thoughts coming in, but take a deep breath and nudge your mind back to the present and refocus your attention on breathing;
· Do this exercise until you feel completely calm.
The breathing exercise can really help when you’re having an anxiety attack, but it’s always a good idea to keep your anxiety in check; get an expert’s advice when possible.
If it’s starting to feel like too much, get online consultation for anxiety. We provide online health care services, including some of the best online doctor’s consultations that deal with a range of different health-related problems.
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