No one knows for sure why diaphragm breathing is the best kept secret in controlling certain types of anxiety. Perhaps it is just too simple or maybe it is deemed unnecessary when antidepressants or selective serotonin uptake inhibitors are prescribed. What we do know is it works and is an effective tool to have at your disposal when anxiety strikes.
Breathing like brain function is essential to life and is a part of everything you do. When you take a breath oxygen is extracted from the atmosphere into your lungs, where your blood supply seamlessly distributes it to every cell in your body. Breathing also makes it possible for carbon dioxide to be exhaled and eliminated. The elimination of carbon dioxide is an important part of our discussion because too much carbon dioxide causes feelings of disorientation and panic. Any minute change in oxygen intake can and most of the time does change the way a person feels and thinks.
Learning how to breathe in a more productive way provides several almost instantaneous benefits. It calms the basal ganglia, a motor control area of the brain that controls anxiety; improves brain function; relaxes muscles; warms hands; and helps with heart rhythm regulation. Some pretty amazing benefits for something that requires very little effort.
The most inefficient way to breath is with the chest. The most efficient way on the other hand is to breath with the belly. When one breathes by expanding the belly it flattens the diaphragm, pulling the lungs downward, making way for a more fully exhaled breathe, which once again encourages deep breathing.
Most of us don’t have a breathing coach to work with us so we need a simple method to help us make sure our diaphragm breathing is implemented correctly. Try this: First clear the area filled with old pizza boxes and beer cans or at least an area long enough to allow you to lie down comfortably. Next lie on your back and place a small book on your stomach. When you inhale make the book go up; when you exhale make the book go down. By shifting the focus of your breathing lower you will feel more relaxed and in control of yourself. This simple exercise will help with bouts of anxiety, anger, and sleep issues. Another breathing suggestion: If you are unable to find a place to lie down and get anxious, upset or tense take a deep breathe and hold it in for four seconds, then blow it out slowly taking about 6 seconds to exhale. Repeat this action ten times. You may be surprised at the results.
In summary, breathing more efficiently is one of the easiest and most cost effective anxiety therapies available. Additionally, many people are finding success by combining diaphragm breathing with herbal anxiety remedies. This combination has proven to be a powerful natural way of controlling mild to moderate anxiety without the side effect risks associated with prescription antidepressant medications. If you have been searching for a simple, affordable, two step natural alternative, this is an option worth considering.
R.D. Hawkins is an enthusiastic advocate of alternative natural health products and supplements with over 10 years experience. To learn more about natural remedies for better health visit Purchase Remedies.com