Hyperventilation is a condition when a person starts breathing very fast, feels weak and dizzy, has a bloated stomach and dry mouth, and experiences chest pain and muscle spasm. Breathing out carbon dioxide too quickly contracts the blood vessels going towards the brain, leading to lightheadedness and a tingling sensation. Additional symptoms could be racing mind and difficulty in concentrating. One might even get unconscious.
Hyperventilation can occur during a panic attack that can be dangerous. It can both be a cause and effect of anxiety. It can occur due to fast breathing, thinking about breathing and breathing in an unhealthy manner.
- Fast breathing – During an anxiety attack, the body is in flight-or-fight mode as a result, a person can start breathing quickly to prepare for the moment.
- Thinking about breathing – Undue concentration on one’s breathing can lead to hyperventilation. The body knows how much oxygen it needs but diverting attention to breathing results in breathing more than what is required.
- Unrequired deep breathing – Taking numerous, long and deep breaths, when not needed, may lead to hyperventilation. A person may feel that he or she is not getting adequate breaths while the case may be the opposite.
Listed below are some tips to help someone avoid hyperventilation:
- Breathing through nose can help to a great extent in preventing an attack of hyperventilation as it increases carbon dioxide levels.
- Avoid wearing ties, tight waist belts, corsets and other pieces of clothing as they obstruct healthy breathing and result in shallow
- One should focus on consuming easily digestible healthy foods and stay away from alcohol, junk and processed foods and stimulants like caffeine.
- It is important to ensure that one is well-rested and sleeps for at least 8 to 10 hours. Sleep deprivation might make one susceptible to anxiety and subsequently, hyperventilation.
- Exercising, walking and running improve breathing efficiency. During these activities, the body neither absorbs excess oxygen nor gives out more carbon dioxide than what is required.
- One can practice yoga to attain a balance between the mind and body. Practicing meditation brings peace to the mind and releases negative energy. Mindfulness techniques that teach a person to focus on the present moment can also help in alleviating stress and preparing a person to face untoward situations.
Anxiety disorders are treatable
Each one of us struggles with some sort of anxiety in our everyday lives as a common response to stress triggers. But, we can manage the symptoms by being more self-controlled and watchful of our habits. Some people worry more and find it hard to relax. It is extremely important for such people to seek professional support to recover for good.
An untreated mental illness can spiral out of control and lead to other health complications. One of the most common and effective approaches in managing anxiety is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). It emphases on altering a person’s attitude towards life and bringing behavioral changes gradually. Seeking the right treatment at the right time is the key to prevent anxiety disorders from affecting the quality of life.
If you or your loved one experiences stress or anxiety, the Florida Helpline for Anxiety can help you find the best anxiety treatment centers in Florida offering recovery programs in a compassionate environment. Call us at our 24/7 helpline 855-920-9834 or chat online with one of our representatives who can assist you in finding customized anxiety disorders treatment in Florida.