Medical Questions > Mental Health > Anxiety and Stress Forum

Difficulty Getting a Deep Satisfying Breath. (Page 2)


October 26th, 2009
can't breathe
I have all of these things. I've been freaking out because it keeps happening and happening and then after a while of not being able to get a full break I start to panic. The other day I got really dizzy and shaky and started crying. The terrible thing is that I'm a teacher and this all happened in front of my students and I Had to cancel a midterm and put the little mermaid on in French (im a french teacher) while I sat in the corner and basically hyperventilated.
I've been having this on an off for two or three months, it comes for a week of two and then goes, etc.
I went to the doctor and she said it was stress- she gave me klonopin but I feel like all it does is mask the anxiety with grogginess. It is nice to just go to sleep during an attack, but I can't keep doing that forever, can I?
I'm thinking maybe Yoga or something would help? I'm a non-smoker so I dont thing any of those issues apply to me. I've always had a high-strung/ worrisome personality but its never been this bad. I'm 23 years old and I can't imagine having this problem for the rest of my life! I'm not a depressed person but when I have these spells all the time it brings on rounds of depression. I dont know what to do!
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replied February 24th, 2010
Shortness of breath...
OMG...who to listen to?? This is what I have gotten out of the reading...
1. eat good, no artificial sugars
2. try not to stress
3. get away from the computer (probably related to stress)
4. Don't go through all the meds the doctor gives you
5. Start smoking again.
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replied April 10th, 2010
I had the problem this problem of being unable to draw a deep and full breath severely about five years ago.After lot of yawning and twisting the mouth a good breath would come but the whole thing just sends you into panic.After much experimentation it went away after taking Magnesium supplementation.I still get it occassionally but I have noticed that it happens when there is phlegm in the head/chest.Once the phlegm descends and passes through the stools the condition passes.So I wait it out and take some ayurvedic medicines to flush it out.Other Common symptoms experienced during this phase-right nose blocked,bad body odor,a feeling of apprehension,hoarseness of voice stomach bloated like a drum , no appetite.Magnesium and phlegm flushing seem to work in my case.I don't take magnesium anymore.The severity is much less and the attacks rare.

Rajeev
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replied May 16th, 2010
I've had the problem of rarely being able to take a satisfying breath for quite a while (years), but it seemed to be worse lately. I have asthma, so I put it down to that. Due to some other issues recently, I had blood work done and found my B12 level was low. My doctor recommended I take 500 mcg daily. The first day I took it around lunchtime and by that night I was taking many satisfying breaths. I still can't believe it. Not only that it makes such a difference, but that it made a difference so quickly.

I doubt this would be the case for many people, but if you don't eat many dairy or meat products, or your B12 level is low for any other reason, it may be worth a shot.

Good luck, I know how frustrating it is!
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replied May 17th, 2010
Difficulty getting a satisfying breath
I have been experiencing this problem since September, 2009. I have been to a Pulmonary doctor where I had a stress test, heart ultrasound, chest xrays, and an allergy test. I was told I could possibly have silent reflux and was put on anti-reflux meds..no change. The stress test showed I have exercise induced asthma, however I don't have these episodes until maybe a few days after exercising. I have inhalers that don't work. Then, my allergy test showed I was highly allergic to Mold. I had my house tested, only found it in my a/c unit, had it cleaned for $200.00. So, here I am 8-9 months later, and I still have this breathing problem. I am beginning to think it is anxiety.
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replied June 27th, 2010
unexplained breathing problem answers!!
Ask your chiropractor about subluxated ribs Wink i have the same problem. i also have acid reflux. these 2 combined can about make you fall over just from being so wore down, its hell when you cant breathe good. sometimes i feel like i got the wind knocked out of me and cant catch my breath back. other times its more irritating yet, as if a vaccuum sucked all the air out of my lungs and left them mostly deflated.
Ask yourselves- what came first? The anxiety or the breathing problem?
ive actually DEVELOPED a panic disorder from not being able to breathe good. they put me on pills (xanax) and i though, well if nothing else it will help me relax.. WRONG! they made me angry and not myself at all.. and i still could not breathe good. so i got off them and thats when the real anxiety things started happening- i was actually scared to wear the color red- and many other bizzare things i feared. i know it was the pills that did it. ive gotten better but the issues are still there and its scary.
for anyone with anxiety or depression i HIGHLY reccomend lucinda bassetts "attacking anxiety and depression" program. its pricey but they work with you on payments and oh wow.. its heavenly and i love it. it is what has gotten me this much better and i thought i was just lost forever.
best of luck to all of you and please look into going to see the chiropractor about subluxated ribs (they really cant be seen on an x-ray ive heard)
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replied July 27th, 2010
Got the solution
MAGNESIUM
hi everyone! well, i used to be like u guys suffering by this very annoying hunger of oxygen.It came to me especially when its very hot! and i start yawning and yawning and feeling tired and sometimes a bit dizzy! It went for a while then came back! The doctor told me its stress in my lungs but the anti stress medication didn't work! later i asked my pharmacist and he solved my problem, and my breathing went to normal after suffering for 5 years, i dont feel any hunger for oxygen anymore or yawning several times to gain my breath, and i even don't feel fatigue anymore, the point is that he also told me i had stress in my lungs but i shouldn't take anti-stress pills, he said i probably have a low magnesium level in me! so i took magnesium pills, 1 pill per day(350mg), because magnesium helps reduce stress moreover its main purpose is to function the muscles in the body properly especially lung muscles it helps them to contract and dilate easier. And i was so surprised how my breathing got to normal just because of magnesium!
So i really advice u to take magnesium pills, 1 pill everyday and u'll start feeling better starting from the first week.
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replied October 1st, 2010
can't get deep breath
I seem to have the problem when I am eating or after I have ate. I am 40 lbs over weight. What is the weight of everyone else on here that has posted? Most of my weight is in my stomach/abdomen.
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replied October 11th, 2010
Some potential solutions
May also consider food allergies as a factor. Allergy to wheat gluten or dairy for example may cause anxiety and stress symptoms in the body and shortness of breath. That's been my own experience. Diet in general can help to balance out this problem. My acupuncturist also said that potassium activates the parasympathetic system, which will help to relax. Magnesium helps potassium assimilation. "Natural Calm" is a safe and highly bioavailable form of magnesium. I think potassium citrate is also the best form.

The "holosync" meditation program is also worth looking into.

Chinese herbs can correct energy imbalances and stressors in the body systems.

And last but not the least, practice EMF (emotional freedom technique) that can get to the core of the problem in the first place. Look it up on google...it's all free info. I can't say enough good things about it.

There's a lot of natural, non-invasive solutions that can be very effective.
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replied July 24th, 2011
Hello everyone, I come from a large family (8 kids). While growing up (and beyond), a brother and sister and I all had this problem. While it was bothersome (and scary and annoying, etc) none of us ever sought help for it. As adults, my brother went to the doctor and he suggested to limit caffeine intake. I stopped my second cup of coffee, and I don't remember ever having that problem again. I don't know whether it was the lack of coffee that cured it, or the thought that there was a solution, eased my mind enough to calm me, thus "curing me". Now my teenage daughter started to have this problem and it got really bad last night. She had no caffeine yesterday at all. She has had anxiety all of her life, but is being treated for it (with meds and a weekly counselor), so I really don't know if for her, it is anxiety or not... The funny thing is...since last night,as I have been trying to find her a solution, MY problem came back. That tells me that (for me at least), there is a psychosomatic element to this whole thing. I think that when you become aware of it, you panic and it becomes worse and your breathing problem gets worse. For me, I think the thought that the coffee was a problem, allowed me to think I had cured it, so it went away. I have learned alot from these comments and I am going to have my daughter address this with her counselor this week. If the counselor gives us any good tips, I will share them with you. I also plan to pop in a yoga DVD and do this with my daughter today to see if that helps....or research how to do meditation. I have never tried that before, but it seems to me that it could be a mind-over-matter thing. I promise I will come back to share what I learned. Best of luck to all of you.
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replied November 1st, 2012
Anxiety Help
There are two excellent things you can do to help anxiety disorder... trust me I suffered from severe anxiety for years and have found these an absolute god send. The first is a very quick and easy book to read called "Self-Help for your Nerves" by Dr. Claire Weekes (she is possibly one of the most sensible drs I've ever heard of. Her knowledge of this disorder is incredible... all drs should be told to read this book, it would save such alot of trouble and wasted money on medicines and treatments). This book has the most simple down to earth advice and understanding of this disorder and I absolutely swear it will help and reassure anyone who reads it. I have leant mine to people I've met over the years suffering from anxiety and all have been so relieved to have finally found the help that it provides they have bought their own copies. They found it more helpful than anything else including medication as did I. The other is called "The Panic away program" by Barry Joe McDonagh. This is available online and also gives excellent advice to really help you learn how to overcome anxiety and to lose the fear of it, especially for younger people/kids... I was looking for something to help a friend whose young teen had started with anxiety. I highly recommend you find both of these... trust me you will wish you had found them when you first started suffering with anxiety. They are incredibly helpful. Good luck, I hope you feel much better soon!
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replied September 12th, 2011
deep breathing difficuly
Thank you for explaining what I am experiencing it jsut happened on friday and I thought I was having an asthma attack for the first time or a stroke. All brought on by job stress and now of course I am fixated on my breathing I am 44 and have worked the last 4 years for an extremely difficult seemingly bi polar boss. Xanax is helping and also finding this site and knowing Im not crazy or about die. Its time for a new job even in this economy Thank you all and good luck and GOD BLess all of you for sharing
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replied October 31st, 2011
Okay, I just signed up on here to send a message to the people who have posted regarding the feeling of not being able to catch your breath. I too have had this problem on and off for a few years. I have done A LOT of research in regards to it. What I have come up with is this...
It could be anxiety related because a symptom of anxiety is shortness of breath. However, having had anxiety since I was about 15 years old I can tell you that the shortness of breath associated with anxiety is generally during an anxiety attack or an anxious moment.
As I look back over the times that I have had this problem it has been during times in my life when I was dieting. The first time I experienced this I was going through the Atkins diet (low carb/high fat/high protein). This last year I have gone on the gluten free/dairy free diet. In addition to this I have a thyroid disorder. Hashimotos thyroiditis. The reason I am telling you this is because from the research I have done it seems as though the people who are suffering from this have a few things in common. 1. factors that would lead to iron deficiency. Thryoid problems, vegan life styles. Shortness of breath is a common symptom of anemia.
2. It also seems that most people experience this about one time a month and that one time a month seems to be near their period. IN WHICH case, the Magnesium would make perfect sense because of the hormonal thing.
NOW, I am not a doctor and I am not suggesting any one of you is wrong or that I am right...this is just some food for thought.
Please feel free to throw your two cents in.
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replied December 15th, 2011
Can't take a deep enough breath
WOW!
I thought I was losing my mind...and focusing on whether or not I have pulmonary hypertention or maybe even lung cancer...
This all started for me after a high school friend of mine dies of pulmonary hypertention almost 1 year ago, she was 29.
I had my first panic attack just a few months before she died,and I have been obsessed with my breathing and the potential for having one of these diseases ever since. I tend to breathe so hard that it causes back and /or chest pains.
I have been to the doctor, and had testing done and everything looks fine.
I too only find relief at those few points during the day when I manage to not think about it...or when I'm sleeping.
This forum has given me some solace for which I am very greatfull!!
I still have a lot of work to do to get this situation under control but at least I know I'm not alone or crazy..and I can find comfort in that!
Thank you!!
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replied April 23rd, 2012
Lack of deep satisfying breathe
Hey you all have so accurately described the symptons. I was diagonised by thyroid an m under its medication for a month and now this lack of satisfying breath coupled with yawning has come up.
I stay in India and now am going to try herbal medicine for stress relief and orient some of my daily chores to reduce some of the physical stress. Also will see if it reduces after the kids start on their holidays.
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replied June 4th, 2012
The likely solution
I feel like I've discovered the solution. After thorough searching, I stumbled across someone suggesting it's acid reflux. This was years ago when the shortness of breath first attacked. I used omeprazole to some relief. The issue waned and came back just a few months ago and lasted until about yesterday. Now, as a pharmacist, I have a good insight into the pathology of disease states, physiology of the human body and pharmacology of the medicines we use to treat various diseases. I have noticed that the condition does not respond to albuterol, but rather just causes the expected racing heart/palpitations. Omeprazole did not work for this latest bout. I was told it was anxiety by a few different doctors. Clonazepam worked a little, but maybe just to lessen the anxiety CAUSED BY the shortness of breath. I was switched to bupropion. I tried it for 2 days and it made me hyperactive and just out of my mind crazy. I stopped that 2 days in and just weaned off everything. I still took an omeprazole almost every day for 2 weeks. Some days were okay, some were bad. Finally I had the doctor try another PPI (proton pump inhibitor), pantoprazole. It is true that some patients will respond better some one PPI over another. I have been on the Protonix for about 5 days now and the issue is almost completely gone.
From another forum, I got the mechanism whereby the PPI can fix this. Acid slowly refluxes up through the esophageal sphincter and the esophagus. This creates an acidic environment with gases that are then breathed into the trachea then lungs. These fluids then aggravate the airways to the point where they cause bronchospasm and constriction of the airways. It is a chemical insult that will make albuterol ineffective. The anxiety is not the cause of, but rather a consequence of, the restricted breathing. Now, the reflux is essentially insidious and painless. I eat overly spicy food on a regular basis and feel that my nociceptors and/or chemoreceptors are inefficient at detecting chemical insult to the stomach and esophagus after so many years of spicy foods. So I cannot typically feel reflux... Either way, hold out hope. If you've tried antacid medications, switch to a different one for a week or two and see if there is help. If you haven't considered GERD seriously, you have really nothing to lose. Good luck, guys. It is a terrible ailment.
RPh1
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replied July 16th, 2012
trouble deep breathing
I have the same thing, for that past few weeks now. Just got worse today. It feels like just below the brest bone where I can not catch that deep breath from. I think I have had acid reflex for the most part of my life, do remember a doctor telling me this and giving me something to take for it. But I now longer have insurance. Aso ringing in my ears is getting worse. I have had vertigo in the past once, sure hope that is not cropping up again. Visualizing now the flower opening in my stomach as I inhale, as someone mentioned here. It does seem to be working. How would I know if there was some sort of a clot or something though? I do watch what I eat, but did just have a tomato sandwhich on wheat.
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replied September 27th, 2012
Hello all. I am a male 49 years old. I have the problem of feeling like I can't take a deep breath as well. I have had this problem for about 30 years. Yawing is what I have to do, but that doesn't always work. I just feel like I can't take that deep breath. I have been to dozens of doctors through the years and have taken dozens of heart and lung tests. All tests came out normal. Several of the doctors concluded nerves, stress, anxiety. So I began my visits to psychiatrists and psychologists. That didn't help either. They put me on antidepressants, which actually made me feel worse. The thing is, the problem comes and goes. I can go months without any breathing problems, but then when it starts it lasts for weeks or months. I have come to the realization that it won't kill me. I think after 30 years I would have been dead by now. It is very annoying and frustrating though the feeling that your air is not going fully in your lungs. I have tried all kinds of herbs, vitamins, and minerals. Nothing has helped me. I think those who are helped by it are having a placebo effect as magnesium or B12 are not cures for respiratory illness (I have tried both for long term and no help). The only thing that seems to help a bit for me is Ativan. Ativan is a tranquilizer like Xanax. Since that helps that would indicate anxiety. I have been at a loss for this problem for 30 years. I also get a severe headache when this happens. Was wondering if anyone else gets a headache. It is nice though to read about other with the same problem.
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replied October 9th, 2012
I do have the same problem but not on regular bases. i can remember when i was young girl of 7yrs i found myself not able to breath deeeeep... And after a long tym whn i m young girl of 24 i found this problem again for last 5months i felt problem breathing deeeeeeep... and these days its on regular bases Sad its the third day !
yes ? anxiety is the only reason for this problem ?
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replied November 2nd, 2012
Anxiety Help
Hi I posted this reply to another message but incase you didn't scroll through I'm putting it here also... I sincerely hope you find it helps.
There are two excellent things you can do to help anxiety disorder... trust me I suffered from severe anxiety for years and have found these an absolute god send. The first is a very quick and easy book to read called "Self-Help for your Nerves" by Dr. Claire Weekes (she is possibly one of the most sensible drs I've ever heard of. Her knowledge of this disorder is incredible... all drs should be told to read this book, it would save such alot of trouble and wasted money on medicines and treatments). This book has the most simple down to earth advice and understanding of this disorder and I absolutely swear it will help and reassure anyone who reads it. I have leant mine to people I've met over the years suffering from anxiety and all have been so relieved to have finally found the help that it provides they have bought their own copies. They found it more helpful than anything else including medication as did I. The other is called "The Panic away program" by Barry Joe McDonagh. This is available online and also gives excellent advice to really help you learn how to overcome anxiety and to lose the fear of it, especially for younger people/kids... I was looking for something to help a friend whose young teen had started with anxiety. I highly recommend you find both of these... trust me you will wish you had found them when you first started suffering with anxiety. They are incredibly helpful. Good luck, I hope you feel much better soon!
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replied October 25th, 2012
This isn't for everyone
I have been dealing with this for some time. It comes and goes randomly. I do have have a way to cope but need an alternative. Every time it comes on i buy marijuana. The weed relaxes me enough that my breathing temporarily relaxes and shifts my mind away from trying to hard at inhaling. If you don't mind the idea of self medicating, I highly recommend trying this. Like i said, I need an alternative. Weed can't be the answer...... but sure as hell has helped. I would like to know if this has worked for anyone else or is willing to try and give me feedback
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replied April 9th, 2013
How to get a deep breathe
i have this problem too. work on attaining a perfect posture of the body. seeing a chiropractor might help, but when doing so remember not to strain the body. if you constantly stretch to grab something under your bed, the way you twist your head and extend your arm can cause your alignment to go out of whack. we are bilateral organism, like in mathematics, what you do to one side of the equation you must do to the other. looking behind you while holding on to the steering wheel can cause your body to get out of line. try doing the exact same motion but only looking to the opposite side, or do a mirror image of yourself reaching under the bed. listen to your body, feel tension when bending over and doing certain activities don't exert yourself stay calm and the muscles relaxed. tightening in jaw, neck, lower back (where ilium and sacrum meet) and in your PC muscles are all where stress binds.
aligning your chakras may help, nothing spiritual here, it's just a way to keep your CNS straight and your body well aligned.
picture your diaphragm pushing your lungs up, when you breath. have a mental image of your body floating with no force of gravity weighing you down, slowly moving each muscle, breath slowly, avoid tension. flex muscles you don't normally flex, you have a dominate foot and arm, this throw you out of line, doing things with your opposite hand and foot can help relieve tension, mirroring the exact movement you to your left side do to the other. your body is like a puzzle, there are ways to stretch and crack your joints that can relive all tension put you have to know what you're doing.
if you can put one arm further behind your back than the other, it might screw up your alignment. if you're always itching your back with the same arm. i used to put my left hand in a fist and put it behind my back to crack it. not doing the same motion with the opposite hand will get you out of alignment. all things should be done symmetrically. stay symmetric and use both fists to crack your back if you have to. yoga, islamic motions used for praying and seeing a chiropractor i would suggest.
every muscles must be stretched out, there are hundreds of muscles in the body, tiny ones. obviously you're not going to start controlling your heart beat or peristalsis in your intestines. your sternum might need to be popped up. i've cracked the bottom of my sternum a few times and it was very relieving. imagine your sternum, picture the bone in your body then imagine a rope tied to it and someone yanks it. point at something with your sternum. imagine someone grabbing your scapulae and near the top and popping them off the back of your rib cage and making a popping noise. i used to crunch my right top head into my right shoulder to crack my back, try doing this to the other side flexing the same muscles, use a mirror.
try having a full-spectrum orgasim?
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