by on January 19, 2022
Breathing is essential to life. Despite its importance, we are rarely aware of the way we breathe. You may be surprised to learn that there are right and wrong ways to breathe, and you may also be surprised to learn that if you don't breathe correctly, it can negatively affect your health in the long run.
What is optimal breathing?
Stop and take a deep breath. When you breathe in, do your shoulders stretch your body up? Then, as you exhale, does the shoulder fall back and contract your chest?
If your answer is yes, you are wrong.
This is called vertical breathing. Although it feels like you're really opening up those lungs, you're just letting air into the top of them.
The American Lung Association (ALA) offers the following tips on how to breathe properly.
With his nose
Breathing through the nose slows breathing and allows the lungs to work more efficiently. It also contributes to the uptake of nitric oxide, which helps transport oxygen around the body.
Breathing through the nose also allows the nostrils to:
Filters toxins and allergens from the air to prevent them from entering the body
Too cold warm air
Humidify too dry air
However, if a person is exercising or has sinus congestion, sometimes breathing through the mouth is necessary.
The belly
The most efficient way to breathe is by blowing air down into the abdomen. As the diaphragm contracts, the abdomen expands to fill the lungs with air.
"Abdominal breathing" is effective because it pulls the lungs down, creating negative pressure inside the chest. This brings air into the lungs.
Why is optimal breathing important for your health?
It filters particles and microorganisms from the air
Fills the lungs with more volume and increases the exchange of blood from the lungs
Keep carbon dioxide levels in the right balance
Maintain an ideal pH in the blood
Support to digest
Improves mood, energy and memory
Helps regulate the body
Improve posture
What causes it?
If you now know you're not breathing correctly, you might be wondering how it happened. After all, breathing is a subconscious process. It's just something your body does automatically, so how does it start breathing the wrong way?
Here are a few possibilities:
Stress - Stress can cause short breathing.
Posture problems - That hunched position causes your chest to collapse slightly, meaning your lungs can't always fill up when you inhale.
Obesity - When you have more fat, there is more tissue that pushes your chest and diaphragm. This makes it harder for your lungs to fill up completely when you breathe, so you breathe for less time than you need.
Tips for healthy breathing
Maintain a healthy lifestyle
Exercise Regularly: Regular aerobic exercise helps increase lung capacity, which is the amount of oxygen a person can absorb with each breath.
Control your weight: Being overweight increases a person's risk of developing breathing difficulties, such as obstructive sleep apnea. People can reduce this risk by maintaining a moderate weight.
Practice good posture. Practicing good posture helps ensure that your chest and the chest area of your spine are fully expanded.
Breathing exercises
Whatever the cause of your breathing pattern, there are some simple exercises that can help you get back to proper breathing exercises.
The ALA recommends two different breathing techniques for people to try: lip pursed breathing and diaphragm breathing.
Lip pursed breathing:
Sit in a chair and relax your neck and shoulder muscles.
Breathe in slowly through your nose, keeping your mouth closed. Breathe in for 2 seconds.
Puckered or pursed lips, like whistling or blowing out candles. Exhale slowly for 4 seconds.
Repeat the above steps
Diaphragmatic breathing:
Sitting or lying down
Place your hands on your stomach and feel the rise and fall of each breath.
Close your mouth and inhale slowly through your nose while feeling your belly rise and inflate like a balloon.
Exhale slowly through pursed lips, as if blowing bubbles, each exhale taking about two to three times longer than each inhalation.
Repeat these steps for 5-10 minutes. Place your hands on your abdomen to help increase awareness of proper breathing techniques.
You can get more breathing exercises to improve your breathing on OPUMP. It may take a while to train your body to breathe properly again. Spend some time each day doing one of these exercises, or just slow down and focus on the way you breathe.
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