Stress gets to us. It might not be right away; it might not even be for a few months or even years. But in the end, everyone becomes overwhelmed at some point — whether it’s from work, relationships, financial troubles, health issues or something else. When stress manifests itself, the results can often be dangerous.
One in every 75 people may experience panic disorder, a condition that results in anxiety attacks and panic episodes, reports the American Psychological Association. One of the most commonly suffered symptoms of these is hyperventilation, an increased rate of breathing that results in the body exhaling more carbon dioxide than it inhales oxygen. This sudden shift in your breathing that can result in dizziness and tingly fingers, and in some situations, you could pass out. It helps to know how to recognize when you’re facing a panic situation so you can adjust your breathing and begin to calm down.
There are a number of anxiety breathing exercises for relaxation you can try. These won’t necessarily increase lung capacity, but they will help you achieve that balance between oxygen and carbon dioxide once again. Once you’ve found this balance, your pulse should slow down, your hands stop trembling and feelings of faintness should disappear.
When you feel like you’re beginning to panic, try these breathing therapy exercises to help calm yourself down.
Mounting mortgage payments. Crumbling marriages. Hospitalized family members. When stressful factors like this start to pile up around you, it can feel like 20-foot waves crashing down and threatening to wash you away. Try breathing as deeply as you can through slow, calming inhales and exhales. These kinds of exercises tend to have a relaxing effect on your body, especially because it takes your mind out of the stressful situation. Like a lot of other methods, though, it’s going to require some practice.
Holding In Deep Breaths
You might think this is some kind of exercise to help you increase lung capacity, but actually it’s a great tool for simply letting it all out. Give yourself some space, find a quiet spot and sit down for about 20 minutes. Breathe in very deeply, then hold that breath for seven seconds (or heartbeats) before releasing it for nine seconds (or heartbeats). Repeat several times until you feel a sense of calm washing over you. Take note that this one can be especially helpful for those in the midst of anxiety episodes and attacks.
Carbon Dioxide Re-Breathing
What does a brown paper bag have to do with helping you calm down? As it turns out, a lot. Yes, it’s easy to poke fun at the stereotypical “nerds” of television and film who have been portrayed easing their nerves by grabbing their lunch bag and breathing their own air repeatedly. But this method might actually help you in a similar situation. It’s called CO2 re-breathing, and it works to help you regain that oxygen-carbon dioxide balance in your body by having you inhale your exhaled CO2. This could significantly help to decrease your symptoms during a panic episode, and if there’s no paper bag around, try it with cupped hands.
Anxiety and high-stress situations can often leave you feeling helpless. Though nothing is guaranteed — especially their ability to increase lung capacity — these three techniques might be the best options to help you calm down when things get too intense. Read more: Natural weight loss