Do you sometimes feel like you can’t catch your breath? If so, you may be experiencing shortness of breath anxiety. This is a common symptom of anxiety, and it can be quite frightening. In this article, we will discuss the causes and symptoms of shortness of breath anxiety, as well as how to get relief from this condition.
How Does Shortness Of Breath Anxiety Look Like?
Shortness of breath is one of the many symptoms of anxiety. It can feel like you can’t catch your breath, or like you’re suffocating. Shortness of breath anxiety can also cause chest tightness and pain. All of these symptoms can make it difficult to breathe and can be very frightening.
For instance, you might be sitting at your desk at work and suddenly feel like you can’t breathe. Your heart starts pounding and you start to feel dizzy and lightheaded. You might feel like you’re going to pass out or have a panic attack. This can be very scary and can make it hard to focus on anything else.
Shortness of breath anxiety is actually a very common symptom of anxiety and can be caused by a variety of things. One of the most common causes is hyperventilation. This is when you breathe too fast and your body doesn’t get enough oxygen. This can cause all of the symptoms listed above.
So this is it – how does shortness of breath anxiety look like! Now let’s discuss some common symptoms of shortness of breath that a person might experience.
What Indicates Shortness of Breath?
Many symptoms come along with anxiety, and one of the more common ones is shortness of breath. This can be a very frightening symptom because it is not only physical, but it can also be a sign that something is wrong with your health. Here are some common signs that reflect shortness of breath:
- Gasp for air
- Feel like you can’t take a deep breath
- Feel like you’re suffocating or choking
- Faster breathing than normal
- Areas of the body, such as the neck and chest, feel tight
- Pain in the chest
- Muscle tension
- Restlessness or irritability
- Heart palpitations
All of these symptoms can make you feel very panicked and anxious. Also, you should keep in mind that shortness of breath can be a symptom of other health conditions, such as heart disease or lung disease. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see a doctor to rule out any other possible causes.
You should not avoid or take lightly any sudden changes in your breathing. If you have never experienced anxiety or shortness of breath before, it is especially important to see a doctor to rule out any other causes. Shortness of breath can also be a sign of a heart attack, so if you are experiencing any chest pain along with these symptoms, it is important to seek medical help immediately.
What Causes Shortness Of Breath From Anxiety?
Anxiety is caused by a variety of things. It can be caused by your environment, your thoughts, or your emotions. When you’re anxious, your body goes into “fight or flight” mode. This means that your body is preparing to either fight the perceived threat or run away from it.
In this state, your heart rate and blood pressure increase, and your breathing becomes more shallow. This can lead to a feeling of tightness in your chest and shortness of breath. There are a few things that can trigger this response to shortness of breath. These include:
- Fear or anxiety about a specific situation, such as public speaking or flying
- A medical condition that causes shortness of breath, such as asthma
- Overthinking and worrying about your breathlessness
- Panic attacks
These triggers, however, are not the only things that can cause shortness of breath. Many medical conditions can cause shortness of breath. These include:
- Heart disease
- Lung disease
- Thyroid problems
It’s important to remember that not all causes of shortness of breath are anxiety-related. If you’re having shortness of breath, it’s important to see a doctor to rule out any other medical causes.
How To Manage It?
When you’re dealing with shortness of breath anxiety, there are a few things you can do to help manage it. These include:
Practice deep breathing exercises
Deep breathing is one of the most effective ways to calm anxiety and ease shortness of breath. When you’re feeling anxious, take a few deep breaths through your nose, filling up your lungs. Hold each breath for a few seconds before slowly exhaling through your mouth. This will help to slow down your heart rate and ease your anxiety.
For example, you can start by inhaling for four counts, holding your breath for seven counts, and exhaling for eight counts. First, remember to sit comfortably with your spine straight. It is also important to focus on the breath and not think about anything else while you’re doing this exercise.
Stay calm and focused
When you are feeling short of breath, it is important to try and stay as calm as possible. This can be difficult, but it is important to remember that anxiety can cause your body to react in ways that make you feel like you are not getting enough air. You can try visualization to help you stay calm. This means picturing yourself in a peaceful place, where you are breathing easily.
It is believed that visualization can help to retrain your body to react differently to anxiety. It can take some practice, but it is worth trying if you find that you are struggling with shortness of breath anxiety.
It is important to have some grounding techniques in your toolbox to help you when anxiety and shortness of breath team up against you. Grounding techniques are simple activities that can bring you back to the present moment and help calm your body and mind. These are actually very helpful when anxiety is triggered by a traumatic memory or event.
Some examples of grounding techniques are:
- Listening to calming music
- Staying in the present moment by focusing on your senses (what you see, hear, smell, taste, and feel)
- Muscle relaxation
- Yoga or stretching
- Mindfulness meditation
These are just a few examples, but there are many other grounding techniques out there. Experiment and find what works best for you. And remember, you can always ask your doctor or therapist for help if you need it.
Talk with yourself
When you feel like you can’t breathe, it’s important to talk with yourself. This may seem silly, but it can help you to remember that you are in control of your body and that you can calm yourself down. Take a few deep breaths and tell yourself that you are safe and that the feeling will pass. Also avoid any type of strenuous activity, as this can make the feeling worse.
For instance, if you’re having a panic attack, you might say something like “I am feeling very anxious right now. But I know that this is just a panic attack and it will pass. I am safe and everything is going to be okay.”
Exercise is considered an important part of managing anxiety and one of the healthiest things you can do for your body. However, it’s not always easy to get started. If you’re feeling shortness of breath anxiety, here are a few tips to help you get started:
- Start with something small. If the thought of going to the gym fills you with dread, start with a simple walk around the block.
- Set realistic goals. Don’t try to do too much too soon. Start with a goal of exercising for 30 minutes a day, three times a week.
- Find an activity you enjoy. If you hate running, don’t force yourself to do it. There are plenty of other options, from biking to swimming to hiking. Find an activity that you can look forward to and that won’t feel like a chore.
- Build up gradually. If you’re just starting out, don’t try to go too hard, too fast. Ease into it and gradually increase the intensity and duration of your workouts.
- Give yourself credit. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you miss a day or two. Just get back on track and keep going. Remember, every little bit counts.
It is often said that prevention is better than cure. This is especially true when it comes to anxiety and shortness of breath. There are a number of things you can do to help prevent or manage your anxiety, including:
- Identify your triggers: What situations, people, or places make you feel anxious? If possible, avoid these triggers or prepare yourself ahead of time so you feel more in control.
- Challenge your thinking: When you’re feeling anxious, your thoughts can be negative and distorted. Challenge these thoughts by asking yourself if they’re really true.
- Drink herbal teas: It’s no secret that herbal teas can help relax the mind and body. Chamomile, lavender, and lemon balm are all good choices.
- Get enough sleep: Sleep is essential for managing anxiety. Make sure you’re getting enough restful sleep every night.
Seek professional help
If you feel like you’re struggling to manage your anxiety on your own, please seek professional help. A therapist can help you understand and manage your anxiety in a more holistic way. For example, they might help you understand how your anxiety manifests in your body and help you develop coping mechanisms for when you start to feel anxious. In this way, you can start to take control of your anxiety and live a more fulfilling life.
So, these are some tips to help you deal with shortness of breath anxiety. Remember, anxiety is a normal reaction to stress. However, if it’s starting to affect your day-to-day life, it’s important to seek professional help. A therapist can help you understand and manage your anxiety.
Moreover, it is also important to understand that everyone experiences anxiety in different ways. What works for one person may not work for another. So, don’t be afraid to experiment and find what works best for you. You will definitely find a way to cope with your anxiety and live a normal life.
To conclude, shortness of breath anxiety is known to be a common symptom of anxiety. If you experience shortness of breath, it is important to seek medical attention to rule out any other underlying causes. However, if your doctor finds that your shortness of breath is due to anxiety, there are treatments available that can help you manage your symptoms and feel better.
Therefore, you should not hesitate to talk to your doctor about your anxiety and shortness of breath. With the right treatment, you can get relief from your symptoms and improve your quality of life.
For more tips and guidance, you can reach out to Therapy Mantra. The team of professional counselors is more than happy to help you in your journey to recovery. Contact us today to learn more about our services. You can also book an online therapy session or download our free Android or iOS app.