Deep breathing for stress is one of the best ways to relieve stress, and anxiety by overall calming down your inner sensation.
Stress is a normal human reaction to challenges and demands in your life, but also motivates us to get things done.
Stress and anxiety affect everyone, whether it is young, old, rich or poor, gender, and cultural background (1)
So, make sure to manage your stress, if stress becomes chronic stress then it may lead to serious health issues.
Stress is the leading cause of mental health illness worldwide, which is also associated with physical health issues including:
- High blood pressure
- overweight or low weight
- heart diseases
- may worse your conditions
- leads to a weak immune system
There are various ways to calm down your stress, and anxiety which is really helpful if practiced regularly.
How Does Deep Breathing Work For Stress Relief?
Deep breathing (stress Intervention Functional IFA) is capable to improve mood and to reduce levels of stress (2)
Several pieces of evidence suggest that deep and slow breathing may decrease stress. but how does it work?
When we are under stress or anxious, our breath tends to become fast, by breathing so fast, the amount of oxygen reaches less in the blood, which promotes stress hormones in the body
And during stress, taking deep breathing, we fill the lungs with enough oxygen, which increases the amount of oxygen in the blood.
This reduces the stress hormone called cortisol which further contributes to reducing the risk of feeling anxious.
Deep breathing also lowers the heart rate and blood pressure, which contributes to feeling relaxed and calm.
Breathing exercises day by day enhance your lung capacity to take more oxygen and help people with COPD and asthma.
Deep Breathing Benefits
There are several benefits of deep breathing which include:
Remove toxins – By taking breathing properly 70% of toxins are released from our body.
Wipe out negative thoughts – Clear out negative, worries, tension, and confused thoughts or feelings.
It is also helpful in managing the symptoms of (PTSD) post-traumatic stress disorder
Release tension – while breathing deeply, purposefully, and slowly contribute to relaxation.
Purifying blood – deep breathing release carbon dioxide and increase the oxygen level in the blood, which improves blood quality.
Ease your pain – Breathing deep, holding your breath, and then imagining that your pain is leaving your body when you breathe out.
Improve heart health – lower the risk of heart disease, by giving sufficient blood and oxygen to the heart.
Yoga is also the best option to reduce stress, as it teaches you to control your breath and mind.
During yoga, the body releases pleasure or feel-good hormones (endorphins), and reduce stress level by decreasing (cortisol) levels (6)
Make sure, focus on breathing, and when you focus on breathing it promotes relaxation, which calms down mind wars (8)
5 Tips To Reduce Stress with Deep Breathing
Here are 4 easy tips to reduce stress with deep breathing are:
Start Slowly – Don’t jump to a higher level, it may lead to serious injury, start with simple easy asanas and then gradually increase.
Pay attention to your breath – Focus on your breath and timing of breathing is also vital which helps in reducing stress, try to control your breath.
Find a comfortable position – A quiet place helps you to focus on one thing, which creates a calm and relaxed sense.
Relax – Make sure, to relax your body and mind to relieve stress and anxiety, because yoga is all about relaxation.
Close your mind: When you’re ready gently close your eyes. take a moment and notice any sounds in the environment. notice your thought and emotions.
Practice regularly – To get the most out of its benefits, make sure to practice regularly, whether it is yoga or exercise.
If you experience any type of distraction start saying “Om” which cuts the disturbing sound and makes your focus on “Om”.
Deep Breathing Exercises
Here are a few deep breathing exercises that you can use to reduce stress, and improve overall health which includes:
Basic Deep Breathing
Set in a quiet and comfortable place, close your eyes, now taking a slow and deep breath, and focus on the relaxation sensation.
In these breathing exercises, the focus is to relax different muscle groups of the body.
Physical tension in the muscles can also contribute to feelings of mental stress.
To perform NMR, follow these steps are:
- Find a quiet and comfortable place where you can sit or lie down
- close your eyes and focus on your deep breath
- Now, starting with your feet, tense the muscles in your feet and hold for a few seconds, then relax the muscles of your feet and concentrate on relaxation.
- then, move to upper body parts, tensing and relaxing the muscles in your arms, chest, and back.
- end with the muscles in your face, tensing and relaxing theme
- do this 2 to 4 times a day with a focus on deep breathing, and relaxation
Making sure, to be patient and give yourself time to relax and let go of tension is essential.
Here you have to inhale to a count of 4, hold your breath for a count of 7, and then exhale to a count of 8.
These exercises teach you how to slow down your breathing and also promote calmness.
It is similar to box breathing, where you breathe for 4 sec, then hold for 4 sec, then breathe out for 4 sec, and finally hold for 4 seconds.
Alternate Nostril Breathing
This technique, also known as anulom vilom, and to perform are:
- Sit on Dhyan mudra, close your eyes
- now, take a deep breath with your right nostril, and during the breath, your left nostril should be closed with your thumb.
- then, hold your breath for 5 -8 seconds, after that, breathe in with the left nose, during breath, the right nose should be closed.
- do this 5 to 8 times daily.
Other Deep Breathing Exercises
- Lower-back breathing
- numbered breathing
- rib-stretch breathing
Is There Any Side Effect of Deep Breathing?
Generally, deep breathing is considered a safe and effective way to reduce stress and anxiety.
However, in some rare cases, some people may experience its side effects which include:
Feel lightheadedness – taking slow, and deep breaths can lower your blood pressure, and that can cause dizziness or lightheadedness.
Hyperventilation – It is a condition where rapid or deep breathing is absorbed, usually caused by anxiety or panic.
Here you disturb the balance of the body inhaling and exhaling, which causes a rapid decrease in carbon dioxide in the body.
Chest pain – If you already have lung issues such as asthma, or COPD, then deep breathing exercises may cause pain and discomfort.
If you have any respiratory issues, then first consult the doctor, before doing any exercises, as it may seriously damage you.
Yoga is considered one of the best ways to reduce workplace tension, and anxiety feeling, which overall improves your sleep quality.
Breathing is a relaxation technique that also involves progressive muscle relaxation, yoga, and meditation.
If you have any lung-related issues, consult your doctor before exercising to prevent further injury.