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brit

Constantly worrying about breathing

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I am always worrying about my breathing. If I'm doing something or distracted I won't, but when I'm doing nothing I just think that my breathig is off. What doesn't help is in my school we have to do training to get a CPR and AED certification and also a first aid certification. I already went through the coarse yesterday for first aid and got my certification today. But for first aid I had to sit through a video about what to do and the symptoms of a heart attack, stroke, allergic reaction, internal bleeding, and breathing difficulties. During the lesson I was getting pretty bad anxiety and was fidgeting and couldn't keep still in my desk until the training was over and we moved on to something else.

Well I was just listening to music and suddenly it was hard to swallow so I tried to again and I must of held my breath or something and I suddenly felt like I couldn't breathe. A burning sensation just filled my chest and I got really dizzy, then I started to hyperventilate. I immediately started to think about what I saw in the video about breathing and had a mini panic attack.

I say mini because it started off really bad but I remembered to just try to accept it as just anxiety and it actually helped. I just told myself that I wouldn't be questioning anything if I was actually having difficulty breathing.

The only problem now is I don't know how to stop myself from thinking about my breathing all the time. Does anyone else do this?

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Hey Brit, I used to get the same way with swallowing. Id think that I was having troubles and having a stroke and it would send my anxiety through the roof.

I found it helpful to focus on an object in the room, and think of as many descriptive words about it as I can. Weird but for some reason it helped.

And I'd constantly remind myself that ive felt anxious about this so many times but nothing has ever actually happened to me.

Hope it gets better. Take care xo

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Hi Brit. When you're up tight through stress or anxiety your breathing style can change. If often find myself taking shallower, faster breaths using my chest muscles instead of the deeper, slower breaths using my diaphragm. Doing it the first way can increase the tension, so it's good to take take time to practise some calming breathing exercises. Taking the breath slowly down into your belly and the slowly exhaling.

Guided relaxations are good for this and I have a mindfulness app on my phone which I try to make 10 mins a day for in the office or at home. I've also found yoga classes to be an excellent way to practise breathing.

So in summary, do relaxing things to consciously focus on your breathing. Before too long it'll be part of your auto pilot and you won't even know you're doing it.

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Hi bee, I'll try to do that. It sounds like it could actually work for me because once I get distracted I stop thinking about it and thank you.

Hi paulh, I have thought about taking yoga classes, I feel like it would benefit me a lot. I do know a breathing exercise my counselor taught me, I usually do it right before I go to bed because that's usually when I deal with most of my anxiety and it has worked. I guess I could do my breathing exercise more throughout the day so it becomes natural. Thank you for replying.

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