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Stress Related Breathing Problems? (Page 1)

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I'm 17 years old and have been having some breathing issues for the past couple months(really since halfway through may).

I have been constantly feeling like i'm not getting enough oxygen. I yawn often and have to take these really big breaths to feel like i'm getting enough air. I went to the doctor I think around june and she said everything was perfectly fine. She though maybe it was stress related. She said if it didn't go away after a while to come back, so I believe I am going to go back.

If it is stress related, are there any tips I can use to may de-stress? I just hate the constant feeling of feeling like I don't have enough air and would like to know if there is anything I can do.
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First Helper johnR
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Users who thank Doodlemeo for this post: alittlebunny  Buttermilkbiscuit 

replied August 18th, 2006
You are the first person i've known (and I don't know you) that had this happen to them too! I was so nervous, I went to the emergency room and then my doctor and they found nothing either! I do not know what it is, it did go away for me after a couple of months (after the summer was over)
at the time, I had an insanely stressful job. Maybe that was it. I even had chest x-rays done and everything, and they found nothing.
Spiritually, I think, it is literally like I couldn't breathe because I was being "smothered" by stress. After I left that job I haven't had it since. If it continues after the change of seasons, i'd have it checked out again.
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replied January 1st, 2012
I have this same issue where i feel like i cant get a full breath, and its worse when im sitting in one place or trying to drive. I feel like im gonna pass out or my throught is going to close. I also took a chest Xray and a sparatic test and they could find nothing wrong with my lungs or neck, but i do have a deviated septum. THIS IS THE STRANGE THING, I see colors and shapes all the time and ive been to the eye doctors and had a MRI and a CAT scan and other test for seizers etc... they cant find andthing wrong with me. They want me to take Clonzapam and another drug but i cant seem to get myself to do it because of side effects and I feel like im loosing it all but im trying to stay strong i just need to talk to people with theese issues can someone help?
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replied January 1st, 2012
I have this same issue where i feel like i cant get a full breath, and its worse when im sitting in one place or trying to drive. I feel like im gonna pass out or my throught is going to close. I also took a chest Xray and a sparatic test and they could find nothing wrong with my lungs or neck, but i do have a deviated septum. THIS IS THE STRANGE THING, I see colors and shapes all the time and ive been to the eye doctors and had a MRI and a CAT scan and other test for seizers etc... they cant find andthing wrong with me. They want me to take Clonzapam and another drug but i cant seem to get myself to do it because of side effects and I feel like im loosing it all but im trying to stay strong i just need to talk to people with theese issues can someone help?
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replied July 11th, 2012
DIFFICULTY BREATHING
i am sorry to hear- you are not alone- at times it feels like someone is grabbing my lungs and I can't breath-I cough and hyperventilate. The Dr.'s tried/tested everything-to no avail. As a last effort I went to a chiropractor- an A.R.T. specialist that specializes in diagnostic work. AND IT WORKED-I COULD BREATH-spine was twisted so it pressed on my lungs-. Also it is very likely you are a shallow (mouth) breather- ALL THE LUCK
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replied August 19th, 2006
Experienced User
I used to have this problem and it does pop back up now and again but I can usually get over it rather quickly now. I think it is quite common as several people in my cbt group said they had experienced breathing problems caused by their anxiety.
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replied August 23rd, 2006
Hi, stress and anxiety absolutely affect your breathing rate, rhythm and depth. An excellent and simple method of relieving and preventing these kinds of problems is through deep breathing exercises. Of course, though, if your job or a bad relationship or similar is the root cause, then you need to address these issues as well.

With deep breathing for relaxation, the emphasis is on a slow, smooth exhalation and a natural pause before the next inhalation.

Exhalation calms / inhalation stimulates.



Try this very effective exercise:

1. Sit or lie down. Place hands on lap or by sides, eyes closed. During the exercise keep the tip of your tongue resting on the roof of your mouth just behind your top teeth.

2. Gently exhale through your mouth to empty your lungs. Inhale slowly and smoothly through your nose for a mental count of 4 seconds or you can count 4 heartbeats. As you inhale gently push out your abdomen - this pushes down your diaphragm and ensures a deep breath.

3. Hold the breath for a mental count of 7. Don't tense up as you hold.

4. Exhale slowly and smoothly through your mouth for a mental count of 8. As you exhale let your abdomen fall back into place.

5. Pause naturally before inhaling again - this may be just 1 second or several. The more you relax, the longer this natural pause will be.

6. Repeat the steps up to 12 or so times, several times a day and whenever you feel anxious or nervous or know you'll be doing something that might make you feel this way. If you have trouble following the 4/7/8 pattern, be patient - you'll get there. If at any stage you feel dizzy or lose your breath, just stop, take some slow, deep breaths and try again or later.

Summary: exhale (mouth) to empty lungs/ inhale (nose) for 4/ hold for 7/ exhale (mouth) for 8/ natural pause / rpt up to 12 times.

There are also many other equally simple and effective exercises including acupressure that you can do for stress and anxiety.

Let me know how you get on with this one.




All the best,

matthew

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replied September 6th, 2006
Experienced User
Sounds like great advice matt!
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replied September 15th, 2006
Re: Stress Related Breathing Problems?
My doctor told me the same freakin' thing... And I don't feel like it's anxiety... Because I had nothing to be anxious about... And it started up again!! But the "not getting enough oxygen" thing is making me anxious! That's for sure... And it's upsetting... I feel like it's because i'm overweight.... ..Which my doctors keep yelling at me about, too... And it's getting ridiculous because i've all I could.. Nothing works.. Not my fault....
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replied September 15th, 2006
mattinchina wrote:
hi, stress and anxiety absolutely affect your breathing rate, rhythm and depth. An excellent and simple method of relieving and preventing these kinds of problems is through deep breathing exercises. Of course, though, if your job or a bad relationship or similar is the root cause, then you need to address these issues as well.

With deep breathing for relaxation, the emphasis is on a slow, smooth exhalation and a natural pause before the next inhalation.

Exhalation calms / inhalation stimulates.




Try this very effective exercise:

1. Sit or lie down. Place hands on lap or by sides, eyes closed. During the exercise keep the tip of your tongue resting on the roof of your mouth just behind your top teeth.

2. Gently exhale through your mouth to empty your lungs. Inhale slowly and smoothly through your nose for a mental count of 4 seconds or you can count 4 heartbeats. As you inhale gently push out your abdomen - this pushes down your diaphragm and ensures a deep breath.

3. Hold the breath for a mental count of 7. Don't tense up as you hold.

4. Exhale slowly and smoothly through your mouth for a mental count of 8. As you exhale let your abdomen fall back into place.

5. Pause naturally before inhaling again - this may be just 1 second or several. The more you relax, the longer this natural pause will be.

6. Repeat the steps up to 12 or so times, several times a day and whenever you feel anxious or nervous or know you'll be doing something that might make you feel this way. If you have trouble following the 4/7/8 pattern, be patient - you'll get there. If at any stage you feel dizzy or lose your breath, just stop, take some slow, deep breaths and try again or later.

Summary: exhale (mouth) to empty lungs/ inhale (nose) for 4/ hold for 7/ exhale (mouth) for 8/ natural pause / rpt up to 12 times.

There are also many other equally simple and effective exercises including acupressure that you can do for stress and anxiety.

Let me know how you get on with this one.





All the best,

matthew



you know what? That is wonderful advice... Except for the fact that if somebody feels like they can't breathe.. They're not going to be able to relax.. It's not that easy.. Try experiencing it.. Trust me.. You can't relax.
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replied September 18th, 2006
Hi, yes, I do know how you feel, having had a panic attack once when stuck in a crowd... One reason i've made breathing exercises a daily part of my life for a long time. While gasping for breath/panicking etc is certainly frightening, you won't drop dead... Your body will adjust itself (of course unless you have some underlying condition, but you said your doc has checked you).

The thing with breathing exercises is that, while they can & do help you calm down during anxious/stressful situations, regular practice will prevent further episodes. The effects of daily practice accumulate - you shouldn't wait till you need them before doing them, that's the key. The more you do them, the better you will handle situations that would previously have rattled you.

The breathing exercise I outlined in this thread is just one of several that work very well, especially in conjunction with acupressure and self-massage.

All the best.


Matthew

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replied July 28th, 2007
Re: Stress Related Breathing Problems?
Having had many types of breathing problems I can tell you this. First, don't worry - one of the main signs of hyperventilating is having to yawn often. Because I have bad ashtma I had to learn the difference between asthma and hyperventilation which can both cause and come as a result of ashthma.

The first things you have to do is breathe only thru your nose - this is an absolute. Without it you will continure to make it worse.

Here is the simple principle - and I know this all sounds too easy. But I want you to now I learned this at midnight one night when I was gasping for breath and thought I would die.

Okay, breathe thru your nose, and do it slowly, (very shallow breaths
) and do them as infrequently as is comfortable for you. In the beginning it will probably be only a second but it will grow as you calm down.

The idea is that if you exhale slowly and then pause for as many seconds as you can before inhaling again you will be building up carbon dioxide which controls your breathing. Most people breathe wrong and over breathe which causes the problem - of course in different levels of difficulty. But the more you store the carbon dioxide, the more you will come back into balance. THere are brething exercises you can do that will help a lot.

You can google hyperventilation and you will find all of your answers, I promise. I hope you get this note, because it will really help.

God bless you.

Doodlemeo wrote:
I'm 17 years old and have been having some breathing issues for the past couple months(really since halfway through may).

I have been constantly feeling like i'm not getting enough oxygen. I yawn often and have to take these really big breaths to feel like i'm getting enough air. I went to the doctor I think around june and she said everything was perfectly fine. She though maybe it was stress related. She said if it didn't go away after a while to come back, so I believe I am going to go back.

If it is stress related, are there any tips I can use to may de-stress? I just hate the constant feeling of feeling like I don't have enough air and would like to know if there is anything I can do.
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replied March 18th, 2008
Doctors
Has anyone ever had a doctor diagnose their symptoms? Do they have medications that can help?
And what type of doctor was it? Was it a general practitioner, or someone with a specialty?
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replied December 16th, 2008
i have been getting this a Lot and being asthmatic and diabetic belive me it no joke..
i have lost count the amount of pills i have had to take one day i was at 18 aday..
Prednisolone is a sterouid based tablet that your doc may give you to help he did me but that screws with my Diabtis and make that worse so what to do .. breath or not, or go in to coma humm its a tough one lol..
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replied January 5th, 2009
:(
I have this problem too, except its been going on for years, I went to the doctor numerous times, had chest x-rays, and have an asthma test thing, and they all came out okay, I feel like I can't breath through my mouth and its the most aggravating thing ever. I live in a small down and there are no mental health doctors, and my doctor hasn't even asked me about stress or anything. I know I have anxiety, I'm not taking anything for it though. It's so annoying because once it starts it doesn't stop for a long time. I just want to be able to breath freely. Does anyone have any advice? Are there any medicines specifically for anxiety with the breathing problems?
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replied January 25th, 2009
weeks of not getting a full breath
This started for me in 5th grade math class. I'd leave and hide in the bathroom. The teacher would give me a bag to breath in. Eventually I would calm down, but I wasn't breathing at a fast rate to begin with, I just couldn't get a full breath. Now in my adult life-30 years later, I go through this 2x a year or so. This struggling to breath will sometimes last for 3 weeks. I only pray for it to stop. I am not on any anxiety medication, either, but I am certainly interested. I'm doing it again. I don't know the trigger. I can't pinpoint an event.
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replied August 17th, 2009
Breathing problems for sure
My problem is i know i am way way stressed out. But this started for me as a physical pain in the middle of my chest. An aching. I went to the doctor and he had me take blood work, ekg, xrays, and nothing was wrong. This was back in December of 07. It went away for a long time with little to no trace of it in between. Now about 3 weeks ago its come back and it wont go away. Went to the doctor a second time and he thinks its in my head. Ideas? I feel like i have shortness of breathe, sometimes it feel like the pipe to my lungs in being pushed down. this is getting very worrying. help!?
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replied September 16th, 2009
I know exactly how you guys feel. I have had flare ups where I have been unable to breath since I was in high school. My most recent one began last week, and I am trying to shake it right now.

I went to a handful of doctors and I was never able to get a diagnosis - though one was convinced that I had asthma (I do not).
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replied November 23rd, 2012
Lorazapam and breathing relief
I have had exact symptoms for 45 years, off and on sometimes for two months sometimes a week. Doctors and Specialists and tests found nothing. Went on Advair and airomir asthma puffers, which provides limited relief and only when overusing the medications.

So during the height of an episode (yawning every third breath and struggling to achieve the yawn etc,) I had some lorazapam in the house and within 10 minutes of taking 1 mg sublingual tablet, the breathing problems disapeared. Day 3 now and I have taken 1 mg every 4-5 hrs and 1 at bedtime and first thing in A.M. and I have had zero urge to yawn or any breathing issue at all.

It may be worth trying if only to get some relief for a while.
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replied November 27th, 2009
Breathing problems
I have that same exact problem..I'm thinking it's stress related as well because I've been looking for colleges and stuff and that seems to be when this all started.

Maybe some yoga or other calming things will help!
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replied February 13th, 2010
stress and breathing
me too, i had tests and i was hyperventilating. i have had it again and it seems to be stess related. i read that when stressed you shallow breath from the chest and use your shoulders to inhale air which causes hyperventilation, the idea is to hold your stomach and with one hand, hold your upper chest with the other, sit up straight to expand the diaphram. Your stomach and upper chest should remain still as you breath and your diahram (in between your 2 hands) should be the only part expanding and moving air in and out. When i tested this I noticed straight away it was my shoulders doing all the lifting to get air in causing me to shallow breath and experience all the symptons everyone has described. I think when stressed it becomes a habit and confounds the problems and you forget how to breath normally and get more anxious because of it.
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replied February 13th, 2010
I have been experiencing this since early January. I am perfectly fine when I am laying down or asleep, but the moment I start moving around I start grasping for air, not being able to get a good deep breath, and then really start getting stressed and panicky, and of course thimk I am dying of some fatal disease. I ended up in the hospital, had an EKG, ECHO, Stress Test, Thyroid test, Xrays, and a CT Scan. Guess what, I am perfectly healthy. Currently I am seeing a Pulminologist, and again think I am dying. He looked at my lung xrays, they were great, He had me do a PFT (Pulmonary Function Test which is a breathing test) that was great as well. He said he wanted to treat me as if I have asthma and see what happens. That was 2 weeks ago, the Advair, Singulair and Maxair aren't really working. 02/11/10 he did an ABG (Arterial Blood Gas test) oh yeah, it hurt like heck! 10 minutes later the results came back, and guess what, I am healthy. So he then had me do walking test, first he checked my oxygen levels while resting which again were perfect. He had me walk up and down the corridors at a fast pace for 5 minutes, of course I am huffing and puffing. He did the oxygen test again and it was 99% which is great. So I am getting plenty of oxygen, I just can't breath. He is now telling me to stop taking all the meds except the Maxair, and he also prescribed me Xanax for the anxiety that this was causing me. Well its Saturday and I decided I wasn't taking the Maxair at all and just do the Zanax just to see if maybe it is sometype of Anxiety disorder and I haven't been grasping for air as much, unless I think about it too much. I was able to walk around the mall and was okay. Maybe it is Anxiety... but I still have one more test with the Pulminologist, the Methacholine Challege, where they try to enduce an asthma attack (it takes about 2 hours to do). Not looking forward to it, but might as well rule it out. So I will give an update on my results if anyone is interested.
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replied March 22nd, 2010
my story
Hey guys
i a 26 year old male
I have had this problem exactly one year today.
At first it was horrible went to the emergency room, they told me it was Asthma, went to my Doctor he told me the same thing. I took all the Asthma medication they gave me nothing got better.
I had x-rays done, all clear. I went to 2 respiratory specialists, one said it was sleep apnea which i know for sure it isn't (proof from the web cam ad the wife) the other said she didn't know what it was and that it might be stress.
So I went back to my doctor and received some Ativan to check if it was stress. Ativan didn't do anything nor did the 2 kinds of anti-depressants i was given.
Funny thing is it started towards the end of March and by end of June, it wasn't going away but it was getting more manageable, even more funny is that when it started getting better i was on no meds and had started smoking again (don't recommend smoking just telling it how it is)
by October i was convinced I had defeated this mystery problem and by December it was hardly happening at all.
Unfortunately however it is the end of March again, March 22, 2010 to be exact and it is happening all over again.
I am still smoking but only about 3 a day though and for the last 4 months i have been exercising like crazy.
So again i went to my doctor and i had a chest x ray done it was normal, and i had a throat ultra sound done and it was normal.
i am going to see a cardiologist because my doctor noticed my heart is beating at about 99 beats per mins when the average is about 80 but i am sure there is going to be no heart problem, at least not one causing the breathing though i will report back.
So what do I think it is...
well i work in the mental health field so i'll go with anxiety first

however... because it seems to peek right when spring comes i am going to check into allergies

and i also think that at this point i may have just developed a bad breathing habit
so i am going to try the whole breathing exercise thing and maybe go with my wife to yoga.

I would be interested to know if other people on here have an increased heart rate as well maybe that has some thing to do with the feeling of needing more oxygen thus always feeling short of breath.
if you read this right to the end thanks sorry it was so long
and if this just started for you and you are reading all the peoples posts that say they have had it for years and can't focus on anything else and it consumes there life...etc

DONT WORRY! do something you enjoy doing take your mind off it because if you dont think about it you wont even notice it
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replied March 24th, 2010
Mom is suffering from Breathing issue
Hey Guys - I feel some hope after reading this. My mother is old,weak,severely depressed and already on anti-depressive medications. She started having this BREATHING PROBLEM - sometime in DEC 2009 and today is MAR 2010. This has no biological/physical root cause - all available tests are done and a Brain MRI test is done as well !! ALL NORMAL.

She is suffering like anything - I visit her every couple of weeks and she is CONTINUOUSLY suffering.Only exception is 'Eating Time' and 'Sleeping Time' - if she can fall asleep. However she struggles a lot to fall asleep.

Doctors are saying its Psychosomatic or its coming from anxiety/stress. But when i ask mother to divert her mind from any anxious events she says i'm trying 100% but the Breathing issue is not going away.

Will the Breathing exercise work ?
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