The entire world is suffering from anxiety and depression related issues due to the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. People are compromising with their jobs, financial stability, loss of their loved ones, depriving business and lot of other issues caused by this scary situation. It’s normal to fall victim of anxiety and depression and you are not alone.
There are several relaxation techniques that you can try to cope with the situation of mental stress. There are different therapists, psychologists and specialists who introduced different ways to cope with anxiety and depression.
Get enough sleep, wake up early, have a balanced diet, exercise every day, be social, limit caffeine or alcohol consumption to avoid panic attacks, and have a balanced life to manage stress and anxiety. People also try, music therapy, aromatherapy, try meditation, yoga, control thoughts, stay close to nature to control their thoughts and become calmsage. This article is about one of the greatest techniques that can help you in severe conditions. Deep breathing or breathing exercises are self-performing therapeutic exercises that can ease up the situation. Let’s explore more about it!
What Causes Breathing Disorder
We breath 24/7 as it’s necessary for life however if we use a specialized technique, it may help you in a therapeutic manner. Breathing helps the blood cells to receive oxygen and release carbon dioxide. When your breathing pattern goes out of order, you start developing anxiety, panic attacks, fatigue, and other physical and emotional disorders. Breathing problems can also be caused due to problems like lung cancer, pneumonia, tuberculosis, asthma, virus infection or lung ailment related to HIV.
Odd Breathing Pattern
Deep breathing exercise is all about focusing on your breathing pattern and collecting, holding and releasing your breath in a pattern. There are two types of breathing, Diaphragmatic (Abdominal breathing) and Thoracic (Chest breathing). When you are anxious, you take rapid & shallow breaths that reach just through your chest and come out. Such type of breathing pattern causes an upset level of oxygen in your body that may result in increased heart rate, muscle strain, dizziness, and other physical consequences. With such symptoms, you may feel stress, anxiety and panic attacks.
Deep Breathing Exercise
Before you jump on deep breathing exercise, its better you try simple breathing exercise as one of the relaxation techniques to fight anxiousness.
Step 1. Sit straight with folded legs on the ground. Put your hands on your knee with fingers in bingo formation and close your eyes. Inhale slowly through your nostrils while keeping your shoulders relaxed. Breath in your abdomen and they should expand while chest rising a little bit.
Step 2. Hold your breath for a moment and exhale slowly through your mouth. Keep your jaw relaxed and purse your lips slightly for a soft whooshing sound when you exhale. Breath out completely until you feel the need for inhaling again.
Step 3. Repeat this breathing exercise for several minutes until you catch up a normal breath.
Once you master the Deep breathing pattern, you may start practising different breathing exercises to soothe your mental health.
Practice Long Exhales
Deep breathing is not the art and secret of calmsage. Deep breathing impacts the sympathetic nervous system that controls fight-or-flight response. The actual art is behind the exhale process as it functions your parasympathetic nervous system that builds the ability to attain relaxation and calmness.
Before you inhale, push out all the air in your lungs and exhale everything. While sitting in a relaxed posture, inhale deep and slowly. Hold your breath for three seconds and exhale slowly. Try to spend a little longer while exhaling your breath out. Repeat this process for 4-5 minutes or until you feel relaxed.
Focus on Your Breath
The point when you have control of deep breathing, it can help diminish anxiety and depression. This method can be practised in any posture that you are comfortable with, standing, sitting, lying down or location-specific however the best mode to do it is the Pranayama pose.
Notice how it feels and intellectually examine your body. Feel the pressure in your body that you may have never experienced. While taking a deep breath slowly through your nose, examine your abdomen and chest. Try exhaling through your mouth even slower than inhaling. You can also mumble any word while exhaling like Oummmmmmmm or Callllllllllllllllllllm. Imagine that you are getting into deep water and inhaling before taking a dip and exhaling like saving every bit of air. Follow this procedure for a minimum of 20 minutes a day in your first month.
Regulate Your Breath
Breathing exercise is a pattern of regulated breathing that needs to be controlled. It’s not just ordinary breathing. When you practice equal breathing, you need to relax before you start and pay attention to your breath pattern for several minutes. Follow 4-2-6 pattern to start with!
Close your eyes and count four seconds while inhaling slowly and deeply through your nostrils. Hold your breath for two seconds and count six seconds while exhaling. Create and observe a pattern while maintaining your regulated breath pattern.
Follow Guided Meditation
If you face problem while focusing or maintaining the pattern of your breath, you can also try a guided meditation. There are several recordings or podcasts available that you can listen to and practice along with it. You can try sitting or lying down in a comfortable place and start relaxing with the recorded guide to avoiding interruption in the patterns of breathing, thinking and controlling your emotions.
Deep breathing or breathing exercises have different names. Pranayama Yoga is also similar to deep breathing exercise. You can also try Alternate nostril breathing or the lion’s breath. These are the next level breathing exercises that you can try once you master deep breathing. I’m sure you will make the most with these breathing exercises and pattern and help resort your anxiety and depression.