Why is Deep Breathing Important?

Why is Deep Breathing Important?

Anxiety is self-sustaining, often setting itself up cyclically: it causes physical symptoms that are often frightening… these then cause more anxiety, which leads to more physical symptoms and on it goes.

This can cause poor breathing habits due to shorter, shallower breaths.

Normal breathing is subconscious since your body takes in exactly how much it needs.

“Chest breathing” increases anxiety and tension and limits the diaphragm’s range of motion.

To help your body breathe more productively and normalize the balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide, you’ll want to focus consciously on deep abdominal breathing.

This breath focus allows you to disengage from distracting thoughts and sensations and taps into your body’s self-healing mechanism.

Try a deep belly breath: breathe in slowly through your nose, allowing your chest and lower belly to rise as you fill your lungs.

Let your abdomen expand fully. Now breathe out slowly through your mouth.

A good technique to teach kids uses a visualization of filling a balloon in the belly and ask them to: smell the flowers and blow out the candles.

Check out more videos in our Psych in 60 series! If you have a question or would like Dr. Wright to speak to your organization, let us know in the comment section below!

Click here for more content by Juliet Kuehnle, MS, NCC, LPC!

Juliet Kuehnle, MS, NCC, LPC
Juliet Lam Kuehnle is a licensed professional counselor. She specializes in helping all ages with eating disorders, body image, self-esteem, picky eating, grief & loss, mood disorders, trauma, and with the LGBTQ population. She also works with lots of middle and high schoolers to help them navigate their challenges and stressors. She is trained in EMDR therapy and uses this often with trauma, phobias, anxiety, and other areas in which clients feel stuck. She spends her free time with her husband and two young daughters, watching Duke basketball & golf, and in the music scene!

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