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Can't Get a Deep Breath, Keep Trying to Yawn....please Help (Page 4)

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November 24th, 2010
i also need to yawn to catch my breath! sum1 please cure me?
im 26 and have had this breathing problem for atleast 10 years it comes and goes - im an asthsmatic! but its pretty well conrtolled! well i think it is - im am a fighter so im a fittness freak.i find myself constantly gasping for a deep breath and usually takes me a few mins to get the breath so desire! the only way i can get this breath is by yawning. ive been to specialists and they couldnt help me cure this problem. i always get asked if its anxiety or stress but it also come on when im not stressed or anxious so i dont know! my asthma puffer does nothing for me! im really scared this is going to be a serious condition when im older - please sum 1 tell me wats goin on with my breathing?
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replied January 2nd, 2011
Me too...Cant believe i've found others goint through this too, thought i was going mad. Im 41 and have been asthmatic for 20 yrs.This started about 14 mths ago, 2 mths after i gave up smoking. It is nothing like the asthma i have and my inhalers do not help. It is driving me crazy, people keep telling me to get some sleep because im always yawning:( They look at me gone out when i tell them im trying to catch a breathe. My doctor just says keep using my inhalers:( It's getting scary now because when i try yawn to get that breath, and it wont come, it feels like my jaw is gonna lock:( Does that make sense to anyone?
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replied January 31st, 2011
I have the same problem! I feel I have to yawn to get a full breath. It used to only happen when I felt sick but now I have it all the time. I also find that I don't notice it until I think about it. Any advice?
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replied March 14th, 2011
I am a 34 year old active mom who also suffers from asthma. I can tell you all that I too have had this same condition and my daughter suffers from it too. Several years ago my doctor dignosed me with anxiety and put me on an anti-anxiety medication. Unfortunately it takes about 4 weeks for it to start working. Over the past 10 years or so I have gone on and off the medication depending on whether or not I was having problems. Currently I have been on prozac for almost a year and am having symptoms again but they are not nearly as bad as they used to be when I wasn't on the medication continously. I have to give my daughter lorazapam when she has symptoms that are getting pretty severe and that usually helps her relax and is not on a anti-depressant like I am. I would say that for anyone who is going through this that they should seek medical advice and would recommend an anxiety medication and to stay on it even if you start feeling better. Hope this helps!!
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replied March 31st, 2011
cant take a deep breath(My rendition of the solution)
Hello al of you. I have alot of the same issues as all of you and it amazes me how many people it impacts,yet doctors are clueless to the cure.
I started getting these episode where I couldnt breath deeply and it got progressively worse. i started feeling like my lungs werent expanding enough, like i lost the ability to breath enough air in one breath. when ever im actively engaged in something it goes away. whenever i think about something slightly stressfull it hits. I started getting these experiences after the death of my mother, and its hard to overcome,yet simple you have to face the fear it instills when you start to feel like you cant take a deep breath. breath as deep as you can and hold it for a little bit. when you get the urge to do the yawn for breath make a point rather than give in to go outside and notice how beautifull the world is, tell yourself everything is ok look at the stars or chat with a neighbor. something to get your mind off it. it is extremely hard to resist the urge to yawn but you can do it, you will get better.

P.S. Please feel free to PM me if you want to chat.
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replied May 2nd, 2011
How do I PM you? I have been suffering with this now for about a month.......It is absolute Hell......Had every test my doctor can think of....
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replied April 12th, 2011
i started having breathing problems recently. It's really hard for me to take a full breath so I try yawning and that helps but only for like a couple minutes and then it happens again all day. I also get short of breath real easily after walking normally just a short distance. I also have chest problems where I get these really bad chest pains really frequently and only in the morning. I have had the chest pains since about August of last year. Whenever they happen I can't breath because it hurts to much to try and it doesn't help whether I sit down or stand up and lying down hurts too much. I was taken to the ER a couple weeks ago one morning and checked out and they were not sure what it was so the doctor said it might just me chest wall pains but there is nothing I can do for them. My parents think that i might need to get an inhaler for my breathing problems but are not sure. I get real light headed and dizzy and almost pass out from trying to get a deep breath. It happens continually throughout the day. I wish someone could tell me what is wrong. I am 19 years old, i don't smoke or anything like that.
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replied May 3rd, 2011
I have this problem as well and it comes and goes. I think it's definitely related to my asthma. It has flared up today - likely due to increased pollen count, I believe. I tried to run and had to stop every hundred yards or so to catch my breath, which is not the norm, and I have been yawning like crazy. I may have to return to using my steroid inhaler along with the albuterol for a while. My best guess would be that this is a symptom of asthma.
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replied May 17th, 2011
Same problem here. Just started a few days ago. It's pretty freaky. Nevfer happened before - I'm 42- though I'm currently under a good deal of stress. It's more irritating than anything but it's a little unnering too. I also have a semi-stuff nose and my upper palate feels mucasy and throat feels almost like mucas is calcified so it might be this VCD thing. Went to the ER and they said my lungs are fine and it's probably stress but I'm going to head back and maybe get some anti-anxiety meds and a puffer for now and ask about the VCD. Good luck all. I'll check in later on this, hope others will too. We're not alone here!
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replied May 17th, 2011
This may help it's about VCD.

http://cantbreathesuspectvcd.com/
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replied May 17th, 2011
Wow, I have this, too! It's like there is no quality in the air. I tried my hubby's Albuterol inhaler once to see if it would help and I think it did a little. I have never smoked and I'm a 32 yr old female. I have mild asthma that I don't need any treatment for.

In my case, I believe that it is because of the pain medications that I'm on. I have serious back and neck problems, so I take the heavy pain medications of Fentanyl patches, 100mcg/hour, and Morphine, 30mg, up to 4 times a day. Usually, within about 30 minutes of taking my Morphine, the yawns go away. I call them "Morphine yawns."

I just did a Google search on excessive yawning and found this:
http://www.ehow.com/about_4672705_excessiv e-yawning.html

GREAT ARTICLE! Please read it!
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replied May 18th, 2011
Hey all, been doing some research and whilst anxiety plays a role - and if it's not VCD - it can very well be related to 2 other things - post nasal drip & acid reflux. My acid reflux wasn't bad untill the last few years, but apparently when you're sleeping the acid can eat away at the esophagus lining making it raw and sore and this can lead to gettting post nasal drip which further irritates the throat. The good news is this treatable with over the counter meds - such as Prilosec and Mucinex. However, you should definitely go see a nose, ear and throat doctor and a gastro intestinalist as they should give you a good going over. You may require a trans-nasal endoscopic exam. That's when they run one of those little cameras through your nose to check out your sinues and throat - you can see these performed on Youtube, nothing to be scared of.

I'd also strongly suggest relaxing via meds and light excercise. I picked up some anti-stress pills from my pharmacy (all natural combination of valerian root, skullcap and hops stroble - and they work pretty darn good and they're much cheaper and safer than Xanax or what have you). Drink lots and lots of fluids, preferably hot tea - the hot liquid is a good way to help get rid of some of the mucas buildup - and chamomile at that. I'm currently drinking Celestial Seasonings "Tension tamer" and it's a really nice chamomile with a few other relaxing herbs and spices thrown in and it's tasty to boot! Also just going out for a nice, slow walk and let yourself be distracted by the world around you - stop and smell the roses! - is another great way to bleed off stress which is key here. Unfortunately we all know the anxiety becomes a vicious loop, so untill you can get that under wraps it's an uphill battle.

Anyway, hope that helps, it's helping me so far. So hang in there, folks. Much like Mary Tyler Moore you're gonna make it after all.

P.S. I should also mention that keeping a very clean house - dust free - is very important so a good air cleaner is a good investment. And you may need a de/humidifer depending on how dry or wet your environment is.
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replied May 19th, 2011
Ahh good news! Went to the Doc and luckily he knew what wa going on. It looks like I and most of you are most likely suffering from something called "Hyperventilation Syndrome". Most all of the symptoms everyone has been experiencing are pretty much this syndrome to a T. Here's a link to a comprehensive medical overview of this including treatment - yay! Do yourself a favour and read the entire thing you'll be glad you did.

http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/8072 77-overview

It turns out most of this is anxienty induced and stress is usually what induces it - though there can be physical factors as well.

"The explanation of hyperventilation syndrome lies partially in the mechanics of breathing. Normal tidal volumes range from 35-45% of vital capacity at rest. The elastic recoil of the chest wall resists hyperinflation of the lungs beyond that level, and inspiratory volumes beyond this level are perceived as effort or dyspnea. Patients with hyperventilation syndrome tend to breathe by using the upper thorax rather than the diaphragm, resulting in chronically overinflated lungs. When stress induces a need to take a deep breath, the deep breathing is perceived as dyspnea. The sensation of dyspnea creates anxiety, which encourages more deep breathing, and a vicious cycle is created."

So in layman terms, it creates a Co2 deficency and your blood ph goes way too alkaline. This sets off even more panic signals in the brain creating a loop where you feel like you can't draw a deep breath. Same thing with yawning, your brain is the problem here. Your body wants to yawn to adjust Co2 levels but can't because your brain is basically stuck in a loop for survival mode. It's also why you get that constant sighing. There's nothing actually wrong with your lungs or throat it's your mind screwing up how you're breathing. Most people can correct this simply through breathing excercises, though you may need meds (benzodiazepines) - my doc just prescribed me some Lorazepam and said it'll probably do the trick itself. Just a word of caution - as my doc told me - these should be used very sparingly as they can create a physical dependancy and should only be used for acute anxiety...like now...just to get back to normal than stop taking them ASAP. Non-addictive anti-anxiety, therapy, healthy diet and regular excercise (it always comes back to that doesn't it) maybe requried for the long term and are the preferred treatment.

More from the article....

"Most patients with hyperventilation syndrome tend to breathe using the upper thorax and have hyperinflated lungs throughout the respiratory cycle. Because the residual lung volume is high, the patient is unable to take a full tidal volume and experiences dyspnea. Physically compressing the upper thorax and having the patient exhale maximally decreases hyperinflation of the lungs. Instructing the patient to breathe abdominally, using the diaphragm more than the chest wall, often leads to improvement in subjective dyspnea and eventually corrects many of the associated symptoms."

and...

"Stress reduction therapy, beta-blockers, and breathing retraining all have proven effective in reducing the intensity and the frequency of episodes of hyperventilation. If the diagnosis of hyperventilation syndrome has been established, the patient should be referred to an appropriate therapist to implement these techniques over the long term."

So you may need to see a respirologist, GI and/or ear, nose and throat specialists too. So make sure to ask your physician if they're familier with HVS, if not get them to follow up on it or recommend someone who is you you're not stuck in the cycle of misdiagnosis and no relief. You can also provide your doctor with the above link seeing as it's a medical paper written by doctors who specialize in HVS.

....

"Most patients with hyperventilation syndrome tend to breathe using the upper thorax and have hyperinflated lungs throughout the respiratory cycle. Because the residual lung volume is high, the patient is unable to take a full tidal volume and experiences dyspnea. Physically compressing the upper thorax and having the patient exhale maximally decreases hyperinflation of the lungs. Instructing the patient to breathe abdominally, using the diaphragm more than the chest wall, often leads to improvement in subjective dyspnea and eventually corrects many of the associated symptoms.

Diaphragmatic breathing slows the respiratory rate, gives the patient a distracting maneuver to perform when attacks occur, and gives the patient a sense of self-control during the episode. This technique has been shown to be very effective in a high proportion of patients with hyperventilation syndrome."

I'm going to follow up here with another post on some breathing excercises you can do that should help eliminate this problem. Also you can google or youtube searches for "Diaphragmatic breathing".
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replied May 19th, 2011
Breathing exercises to combat HVS....

http://reviveyourlife.com/inspiration-and- wellness/do-you-suffer-from-hyperventilati on-syndrome/

Overcoming Hyperventilation Syndrome

"There is good news for Hyperventilation Syndrome sufferers; it is possible to learn to control your breathing and relieve your symptoms in a relatively short period of time. One of the most accurate and complete resources to help one overcome this affliction is an Ebook titled Hope and Help for Hyperventilation Syndrome. One aspect of recovery detailed in this book includes practicing several breathing techniques that will allow your body to learn to breathe more slowly. A watch with a second hand is the only piece of equipment required.

While performing each of these breathing exercises, it is important to use proper breathing mechanics. Hyperventilation Syndrome, caused by short, choppy breaths, is usually the result of inefficient chest breathing. Instead, focus on controlled abdominal breathing.

How do you know if you are using proper breathing mechanics? Lie on your back on the floor and place one hand on your belly, and the other on your chest. When you inhale, you should feel your abdomen rise while your chest remains relatively still. A fluid exhale should follow (don’t hold your breath) which causes the abdomen to lower back to its original position. After a one second pause, inhale again. Nasal breathing provides for a more controlled, relaxed breathing pattern than does mouth breathing, so keep your mouth closed.

The first breathing exercise is referred to as the 7-11 method. The inhalation is timed to last 7 seconds (or counts) while the exhalation is timed to last 11 seconds (or counts). With repeated practice of this method the body will be reset to breathe more slowly and evenly. Soon the body will no longer find it necessary to take quick, shallow breaths.

The second exercise consists of two 5-minute controlled breathing sessions per day. The goal of each of these 5-minute sessions is to concentrate on taking only 3-5 breaths per minute. The breaths should be slow and deliberate. Again, the goal of this method is to retrain the body to see that rapid breathing is not necessary. Practice twice daily, and otherwise forget about your breathing (i.e. do not constantly check on your breathing technique throughout the day as this may add additional stress and worry).

Repetition and regular practice of these breathing exercises is essential to overcoming this affliction. It is important to maintain patience during the breathing retraining process and it should be expected that several weeks pass before noticing positive results. Once the body is retrained to breathe slowly and evenly, the person suffering from Hyperventilation Syndrome should see a dramatic decrease in overall symptoms. Gone should be the lightheaded and dizziness that have become part of daily life. Also, gone will be the accompanying vague and ever changing symptoms of fatigue, memory loss, nerve pain and intestinal discomfort."

I sincerely hope this helps and please pass this information on if ever you see others suffering from this. Life is too short to suffer from this terrible thing. Try and stay positive and keep your stress down and you'll be ok. Just remember the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy...DON'T PANIC! Smile Best of luck everyone! Take care, god bless!
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replied July 12th, 2011
Shortness of breath
For some people the cause could be stomach gas or hiatal
Hernia. Hiatal hernia affects your diaphragm for breathing.
If your stomach is full of gas it could be pushing on your
diaphragm and lungs.
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replied September 18th, 2011
I have noticed that this problem is not getting handled by anybody on this board. I am currently experiencing an acute inability to get a full breath myself and only a successful yawn relieves this and a good deep yawns are few and far between.

For me it occurs that strained breathing comes up in times of great fear and stress in my life. Currently I have enormous $ concerns and fear of my and the people around me's survival. I am wondering if stress is a commonality amount people reporting to have shortness of breath. ( Besides the obvious stress that comes from not being able to get a full breath)

Has anyone else here noticed that this breathing issue occurred during times of great stress?
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replied September 18th, 2011
My shortness of breath problem has been around for about a month. It started out I think because I was under a lot of stress due to my junior year of college beginning and I had no plans and still don't, but when I decided it's ok that I don't have plans my breathing got much better. I do find it hard to breathe every few days now depending on my situation. The doc told me its alergies but I'm sure it's not. I have friends that had breathing problems due to college stress too and one told me that an inhaler really helped her. She used it only when she had a really hard time breathing because it could become addicting (the inhaler) and you will find that the more you use it the more you will have shortness of breath, however this won't happen if you use it as little as possible when you are in dire need of it. Hope this helps.
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replied September 20th, 2011
Shortness of breath
Zazzy, i hear you. And I as well think the inhalers can be unhealthy in the long run. I would only use them if it was an emergency. I have noticed Dr's dishing those things out t one far too casually . I do not use an inhaler. I just need to calm down.
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replied September 22nd, 2011
May seem slightly unrelated at first but it may help so read it!
Hi guys this may help:
I went to see an ear/throat/nose specialist a few days ago because i had constant blocked ears for 4 months and was get irritated with it and i couldnt breath properly like everyone else is saying. However he said my ears were fine and then he looked up my nose and noticed that these two parts of my nose passageway were inflamed and purple and said because they were so close together was the cause of my difficulty breathing and ear blockage. And basically the inflammation has apparently been there possibly my whole life due to allergy gone unnoticed and these were actually the secondary effects so i have to use this nasal spray twice a day for 3 months, if it does not work it means it is an abnormality not an allergy and will have to have a minor operation so i can breath properly again. This could relate to a few of you out there, Hope it helped!
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replied September 25th, 2011
this breathing technique is helping me
I have similar issues. In my case, likely both mild asthma as well as anxiety. These breathing techniques are helping me a lot right now, regardless of what is causing it - its really worth a try: http://www.asthmacrc.org.au/breathing_tech niques.html
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Users who thank japhy for this post: Kellyyo 

replied November 1st, 2011
I need that yawn!
So Glad I found this forum! I have been having anxiety about all the possibilities of this problem!
It has been about two weeks and yet I still am constantly yawning to catch a breath.
I now have peace of mind thanks to you all so thank you very much Smile
post-nasal drip was one of the factors that has influenced the shortness of breath. The doc has told me to use flonase and persistently use my inhaler and it should clear up withing a few weeks to a month.
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