How important is a breath?

We all know that the breath brings oxygen into the body, but do you also know that the breath helps balance our body chemistry?

When the breath is dysfunctional, our body chemistry changes. Symptoms may be subtle at first, but the effects of even slightly altered body chemistry can have significant negative effects on long-term health.

Over breathing

Over breathing is a very common breathing problem. The body expires too much CO2 as a result of shallow and fast breathing. Body chemistry is altered in a way that can affect our physical and emotional well-being.

Signs of over breathing:

  • Feeling short of breath or breathlessness
  • Inability to take a deep breath
  • Muscle tension
  • Tingling of the skin
  • Cold or sweaty hands
  • Tightness or discomfort in the chest
  • Numbness in the fingers or toes
  • Light-headedness or dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Sighing, gasping, or breath holding
  • Difficulty concentrating

Conditions associated with over breathing include:

  • Chronic pain
  • Recurring injuries
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Sleeping difficulties
  • TMD
  • Asthma
  • Scoliosis, spine deformities
  • Cystic fibrosis

What’s YOUR breathing pattern?

Sit comfortably, place one hand on your chest, the other on your stomach. Become aware of your breathing – feel the pattern and the movement.

  • Are you breathing through your nose or your mouth?
  • Which hand is moving first?
  • Which is moving the most?
  • How many breaths do you take in a minute?

Efficient, healthy breathing:

  • Air goes in and out through the nose
  • The lower rib cage moves with breathing
  • Each breath is slow, rhythmic, and quiet
  • 8-14 breaths per minute

BreathWorks helps restore balanced breathing:

  • Capno trainers measure expired CO2 and are used to observe and train balanced breathing
  • Manual Physical Therapy is used to improve spine mobility
  • Therapeutic exercise is used to restore strength and coordination
  • Relaxation or Meditation is used to build awareness and mindfulness of the breath

Who can benefit from breathing re-training?

  • People with:
    • Recurrent injuries
    • High stress levels
    • Headaches
    • Anxiety and depression
    • Back or neck pain
    • Repetitive strain injuries
    • Chronic pain
    • Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue
    • Unexplained symptoms in any body system
    • TMD (temporomandibular disorders)
  • Athletes
  • Singers, performers, teachers, or speakers
  • Children or adults

Will insurance cover my Breathing Evaluation?

It is possible for our location to bill insurance for your breathing evaluation. We will need to do a physical therapy initial evaluation first to determine the medical necessity of the breathing evaluation. If you are not currently injured or in pain, or do not have medical insurance, we offer cash pay rates. Please contact our clinic for details and appointment scheduling.

“From the moment of conception our bodies begin to breathe. Each cell in the body expands, condenses, and rests in an internal rhythmic pattern, a pattern that will become amplified into full-body breathing at the moment of birth. This first movement is the basic template for our existence. Whether we are sitting still, running up a hill, or sound asleep, the breath acts as a continuous resonant presence infusing and influencing all other processes, from chemical reactions of our cells to our moment-to-moment psychological and emotional state.”

- Donna Farhi (Yoga Mind, Body and Spirit)

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