It is a known fact that our breathing rate instantly changes due to any sudden reaction or situation; we tend to breath shallowly and rapidly. We name this phenomena hyperventilation because usually we do not physically exert ourselves. When this happens, we may face these uncomfortable signs that we are getting a panic attack:
- Shortness of breath
- Some lump in the throat
- Numbness or tingling in the feet or hands
Now, you may feel scared of the panic attack but you need not to worry as you can reverse your panic attack’s symptoms by changing your breathing pattern and rate. Our body is having this equally opposite and powerful system to cope up with the panic attack and its symptoms. By understanding and using this system effectively we can relax yourself without any hassle. We call it relaxation or calming response by our body as it helps to reverse the symptoms of panic attack.
Let us have a look in six deep breathing exercises for anxiety:
- Calming your breath/ natural breathing
To begin with first of all we need to calm our breath so that we can manage our body to simulate and reverse the panic attack. Instead of breathing in to the lower chest you will tend to breathe in the upper chest so that rapid breathing occurs and will cause hyperventilation.
It is called abdominal breathing or natural breathing as it is a way to breathe all day long till you are involved in physical activity. You should breathe normally all day long so that you have enough intake of oxygen all day long.
All you have to do is to slowly inhale air through your nose so that you can fill your lower lungs. Afterwards you have to exhale with ease so that you can inhale and exhale normally. Continue breathing like this and focus on filling your lungs.
You will see that this breathing pattern is totally opposite of the breathing pattern that comes when you are under panic attack.
- Deep diaphragm breathing
You can use this technique during the times when you are under panic attack and you can control hyperventilation and to enhance physical comfort. For this you have to follow these steps:
- Take slow, long breath from your nose, and fill your lower lungs first and upper lungs after that
- Count to three while holding your breath
- Exhale it slowly from your mouth and relax the facial muscles, shoulders, jaw, and stomach.
You have to practice this technique ten to twenty times a day and use it when you feel that you will be under a panic attack. You will get used to the process and will instantly use it when you are under panic attack as you are familiar to the process.
- Calming counts
This technique is calming counts as it is time concentrating technique and you will have to focus on time. It takes longer to complete as in 90 seconds and it helps you to access the calming response of your body. You will forget the thing for which you were worried and was under the panic attack as you will be concentrating on some specific task. By doing this you can control the negative thoughts and reverse the panic attack.
Process is as under:
- First of all, find a place where you can sit with comfort.
- You need to take a slow and long breath and exhale it saying “Relax” under your breath slowly
- Shut your eyes
- Take a few natural slow breaths and count them
- Focus on your jaw, stomach and shoulder movements while you are breathing
- Open your eyes while you are done with ten breaths
You can change the negative thoughts while you are focusing on your breaths and the movements and you are giving yourself time. But keep one key thing in mind that this technique is going to work if you want it to work, like if you are not willing to concentrate then you will not be able to get the positive results.
- Nostril breathing
You need to do this by holding one of your nostril while breathing in and exhaling by the other nostril by holding the other nostril. This is called alternate breathing through the nostrils, you need to continue this until you are feeling relaxed. Just focus on your breathing pattern and let go all the worries so that you can reverse the panic attack that had caused to discomfort.
- Skull shining breathing
This one is done when you slowly exhale and exhale out with power from the lower belly. Do this regularly so that you become used to it and can use it when you are under the anxiety attack. Just sit calmly wherever you feel comfortable and start practicing this. When you are under an anxiety attack just sit and follow this breathing pattern and focus on the changes your body is going through while this you are following this breathing pattern. This way you can distract your concentration from the thing that caused anxiety to your breathing pattern and slowly you can reverse the anxiety attack.
- Positive Visualization
When you are not feeling comfortable or are not able to reverse the panic attack while you are practicing all the five deep breathing exercises for anxiety, then you should go for one as this works for the people who are hard on their selves. It is pretty much easy just pick any deep breathing pattern that suits you, and start doing it while checking out some positive visuals.
For instance, you can see the images of natural beauty if that gives you positive energy, or visuals of kids laughing; whatever gives you positive energy just find that out and start doing this. You will get instant results sooner than later.
It is quite the good news that to let go all the worries and cop up with the difficult situations, out breath is going to help us in this regard!