Your Level Of Asthma Control
If your asthma is well controlled, your airways will be less sensitive to exercise. You’ll find exercise is less of a trigger for you.If you find exercise makes your breathing a lot worse, it could be a sign that your asthma is not controlled. Tell your doctor about your symptoms and ask how to get your asthma under control.If your asthma is usually well-controlled, but you’ve got a cold, flu, or other respiratory infection, you could be more likely to get symptoms while exercising. If you’ve been sick, pay careful attention to your symptoms. It may be a good idea to exercise less while you’re getting over your chest infection.
How Does It Work
There are a number of Buteyko breathing clinics around the world and each has its own approach to the method. Basically, it involves breathing out fully, and then trying to breathe out a little more â until it feels like your abdomen is being drawn back against your spine. Stay in this exhaled state for as long as you comfortably can, then allow the air back in again reasonably slowly. It must be approached gently â that is, no gulping or gasping. Finally, you breathe normally for a while. When ready, you start again at the first step â breathing out fully â and go through the process again.
People practising Buteyko aim to increase the length of time they can hold the exhaled position. They breathe through the nose and avoid taking deep breaths.
Major Need For Breathing Specialists In The Medical Profession
After medical school, most doctors choose to be further educated in a variety of specialties, for example allergology, rheumatology, oncology, or surgery. Breathing is, however, not an area of specialization. I feel that this lack of a specialized education within breathing is as surprising as what it reveals. At the end of the day, our breathing is the bodys most important function, and how we breathe affects all of the bodys organs and systems.
One way to view the people who turn to the healthcare system is as being customers. If these customers dont experience the help they need, they naturally will look somewhere else. In this way, the healthcare system works exactly like any other competitive market.
It is not my intent to attack the healthcare system, on the contrary it is intended as a helping hand. By pointing at the present knowledge gap and noting the importance of improving medical education, the medical practitioners will be able to more frequently give advice that fits their customers needs.
If I were allowed to continue wishing, it would be fantastic if part of healthcares job also could involve giving people tools and knowledge to help them take responsibility for their health. The corporate world calls this working proactively, constructively, and long-term.
Recommended Reading: What Makes Asthma Flare Up
Low Magnesium Leads To Lower Lung Function
Studies have found that low intakes of magnesium in the diet are associated with lower lung function as shown through airway flow rates, airway hyper-reactivity, and increased risk of wheezing. Thus, it is important that the body receives adequate levels of magnesium for asthma and lung health.
In addition, magnesium has also been shown to inhibit cholinergic neuromuscular transmission, stabilize mast cells and t lymphocytes, and stimulate the generation of nitric oxide and prostacyclin. This means low magnesium in the diet may be a serious risk factor for lung diseases.
What Is The Buteyko Breathing Method
The Buteyko breathing method focusses on the rhythm and rate of breathing, aiming to slow down the breathing rate and regulate the rhythm.
According to the Russian medical doctor, Konstantin Buteyko, people with asthma and other related diseases hyperventilate and release too much carbon dioxide from the body. To compensate, he postulated, their bodies have developed corrective mechanisms to limit the release of carbon dioxide, like the tightening of the bronchial muscles and the production of lots of mucus in the airways, which are well known as asthma symptoms.
The breathing technique that Buteyko developed is said to correct the hyperventilation and subsequent decreased level of carbon dioxide. If used correctly, Buteyko practitioners claim, the breathing method can lead to a reduction in reliance on the use of asthma medicines for relief of symptoms.
Some of those who practice Buteyko breathing also suggest that breathing through the nose, rather than the mouth, may also help improve asthma symptoms. The thinking is that mouth breathing may dry the airways, making them more sensitive and prone to increased mucus production.
You May Like: Does Smoking Weed Make Asthma Worse
Lie On Your Left Side With A Pillow Between Your Legs
If youre a side sleeper with asthma, lying on your left side may help particularly if you have gastroesophageal reflux, also known as heartburn, which can trigger asthma especially at night. Sleeping on your left side uses gravity, the shape of the stomach, and the angle of the connection between it and the esophagus,which can reduce reflux. Lying on your left side with your head elevated may be enough to keep you comfortable through the night, but if its not, experiment by adding a pillow between your legs.
Adding the pillow may keep your spine stable throughout the night and may improve your sleep posture, which can help you breathe easily.
Dont Miss: Do Asthmatics Get Sick More Often
How Do You Calm An Asthma Attack
A reliever inhaler is the best treatment for an asthma attack, but in case one isnt on hand, sit upright and force yourself to take long, deep breaths. It improves lung function, wont irritate airways, and slows your breathing, preventing hyperventilation. If symptoms worsen, seek emergency medical help immediately.
Also Check: What Happens If You Smoke Weed With Asthma
Ways To Manage Your Springtime Asthma
If youre one of the 25 million Americans who suffer from asthma, the allergens of spring can make it difficult to breathe.
Asthma is a chronic condition in which the airways of the lungs become inflamed and narrow, often due to one or more triggers in the environment. Up to 80 percent of children and half of adults with asthma experience attacks when they come in contact with specific allergens.
During the spring, tree pollens, mold spores and grass all have the power to inflame and narrow the air passages of people who are sensitive to these natural triggers. Wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness and coughing are some of the common symptoms that occur during an asthma attack.
Among the most common triggers for asthma are:
- Outdoor allergens
- Indoor allergens, including pets, dust mites and smoke
- Cold air
- Reflux disease
Reliever And Preventer: Know Your Asthma Medicine
There are two main types of asthma medicines: preventers and relievers. The preventer will help you manage your asthma and is for continuous daily use. The preventer reduces the asthma inflammation in your lungs whereas the reliever quickly opens your airways and is to help you when your symptoms get worse.
Proper use of your asthma inhaler and a good inhalation technique makes all the difference in breathing better. Using your preventer accordingly will help you control the inflammation in your lungs and make it easier for you to breathe. Make sure you understand the instructions given by your doctor or nurse, and follow them. Keep your reliever with you in case your asthma symptoms get worse.
You May Like: Can You Join The Army If You Have Asthma
Breathing Exercises For Severe Asthma
Breathing is something most people take for granted except for those with severe asthma. Asthma narrows the airways in your lungs to the point where it can be hard to catch your breath.
Medicines like inhaled corticosteroids and beta-agonists open up your airways to help you breathe easier. Yet for some people with severe asthma, these medicines might not be enough to control symptoms. If youre looking for something to supplement your drug treatment, you might want to try breathing exercises.
Until recently, doctors didnt recommend breathing exercises for asthma simply because there wasnt enough evidence to show that they work. Yet more recent studies suggest these exercises might help improve your breathing and quality of life. Based on current evidence, breathing exercises may have value as an add-on therapy to medication and other standard asthma treatments.
Here are six different breathing exercises for asthma. Some of these techniques are more effective than others at relieving asthma symptoms.
Exercises + Meds Are Most Effective
When used in conjunction with standard medicine management, studies prove breathing exercises can be an effective, non-pharmacological treatment for many patients with asthma. While breathing exercises havent been shown to modify the disease or improve lung functioning, they can be a useful way for patients to better cope with the ongoing effects of asthma. Whats more, according to research, over time, breathing exercises can help with hyperventilation, which is a hallmark symptom of an asthma attack.
Recommended Reading: Medicinal Marijuana Asthma
How Is Nocturnal Asthma Treated
There is no cure for nighttime asthma, but daily asthma medications, such as inhaled steroids, are very effective at reducing inflammation and preventing nocturnal symptoms. Since nocturnal asthma or nighttime asthma may occur anytime during the sleep period, asthma treatment must be sufficient to cover these hours. A long-acting bronchodilator delivered in an asthma inhaler can be effective in preventing bronchospasm and symptoms of asthma. If you suffer from nocturnal asthma, you may also benefit from a long-acting inhaled corticosteroid. If you suffer with GERD and asthma, ask your doctor about medication that reduces acid production in the stomach. Avoidance of potential allergy triggers such asdust mites, animal dander, or feathers in a down comforter may also be very helpful in preventing allergies and asthma and nocturnal asthma attacks.
In addition, using your peak flow meter, you can monitor how your lung function is altered throughout the day and night. Once you notice this altered pattern of lung function, talk with your doctor about a plan to resolve your nighttime asthma symptoms. According to your type of asthma and asthma severity , your doctor can prescribe treatment to help you resolve your nighttime asthma symptoms so you can sleep like a baby.
Goodbye To Nocturnal Triggers
Whatever triggers your asthma symptoms during the day could also become problematic at night. Dust mites are known to exacerbate night-time asthma symptoms, and they love to get buried in the bedcovers. So, its a good idea to vacuum every corner of your bedroom regularly and to wash your bedding on a high heat.
Is the temperature in your room too hot or too cold? For some people temperature can be a night-time trigger. If youre experiencing a dry cough, you could consider installing a humidifier. Another common night trigger can be a high pollen count but thats easily fixed by keeping windows shut firmly and taking an allergy medication.
Also Check: Does Weight Gain Make Asthma Worse
Get Tested For Sleep Apnea
People with asthma have a high risk of developing sleep apnea. Congestion from asthma causes snoring and may halt breathing for a few seconds at a time. If you wake up feeling tired, moody, and sore each morning, despite getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep, talk to your doctor about getting tested for sleep apnea.
If left untreated, sleep apnea can lead to long-term effects, like excessive daytime sleepiness and more serious medical conditions, like insomnia and acid reflux Worlds largest medical library, making biomedical data and information more accessible.View sourceor GERD).
Take A Preventative Stance
If youre especially sensitive to springtime allergens, use air conditioning in the house and car to limit your exposure. If youve been outdoors, wash your hair and clothes when you get home to get rid of those allergens. Clear your nasal passages with a Neti pot or other nasal irrigation method. Indoors, try to clear your house of allergens that trigger you.
Recommended Reading: What Do You Do When You Have An Asthma Attack
Are There Complementary Asthma Treatments
Of course, there are. Non-medical remedies exist that you can explore to better manage chronic asthma symptoms.
Besides placebo medications, breathing exercises, and even acupuncture the use of an indoor air purifier is effective in fighting harmful airborne pathogens responsible for triggering respiratory illnesses such as asthma.
A good example is VBreathe Tasman.
VBreathe is an intelligent, portable all-natural indoor air purifier and detoxifier our world-first patented combination of HEPA filtration and VActive Natural Gel technology that improves indoor air quality and fights harmful pathogens indoors.
We have pivoted to calling it an all-natural air purifier and detoxifier for several reasons:
This device is also independently tested to capture up to 97% of ultrafine particles . VBreathe Tasman, combined with asthma medical treatment, can prove effective in managing chronic asthma.
When To See The Doctor
A good rule of thumb is you should visit your doctor if you have asthma and you wake up in the night more than once per week after using treatments. Your doctor can evaluate what may be causing your symptoms and help modify your treatment plan. Checking your breath in a peak flow meter at night may also be helpful.
If you are not diagnosed with asthma but have asthma-like symptoms at night, you should report the episodes to your doctor. While you may not have asthma, your doctor can point you in the right direction for treatment.
Don’t Miss: How To Get Rid Of Asthma Without Inhaler
Diaphragm Breathing Exercise Lying Down
After you learn this breathing technique lying down, you may wish to try it while sitting in a chair. This is slightly more difficult.
Be Familiar With Your Inhaler
For those times when you cant breathe, knowing where your inhaler is, how much medicine it contains and how to use it properly can greatly relieve your breathing distress. Using your inhaler properly is really important for getting the medicine into your lungs, Dr. Raub says. If youre not sure how to use it, ask your doctor or pharmacist. Common-sense guidelines for optimal inhaler use include:
- Shake the canister for 10 seconds and take off the cap.
- Attach a spacer device to the inhaler to get more medicine into your lungs.
- Take a slow, deep breath just after you press down on the canister and inhale through your mouth, not your nose. Hold your breath for 10 seconds. After 30 seconds, repeat with a second puff and a third, if needed.
Don’t Miss: Does Weight Gain Make Asthma Worse
Breathing Training For Athletes: Apply The Principle Of Specificity
Strength athletes need to dial in proper breathing and bracing for maximal strength:
- Practice 360-degree breathinga full, deep breath where the whole torso expands in all directions.
- Manage intra-abdominal pressure, which stabilizes the spine and allows the athlete to lift more weight.
- Create a strong abdominal cannisterbracing or contracting ALL of the core musculature, and then forcing the diaphragm down with a deep breath, producing intra-abdominal pressure.
For the endurance athlete, increasing efficiency and going longer without fatigue are key. Building strength in the breathing muscles can decrease the respiratory metaboreflex, so therell be less fatigue in the working arms and legs.
Consider what happened during your last cardio workout. You probably started huffing and puffing a little bit, right?
If you consciously slowed and deepened your breathing, youd use more of your lung capacity, increasing the oxygen supply to your working muscles.
You can increase the work capacity of the respiratory muscles by controlling the speed and depth of your breath during lower-intensity cardio.
Try doing one long, slower workout every week breathing through your nose. Or breathe through a straw in your mouth for five minutes during your warmup.
Giving our clients control over their breath and their bodies is a critical piece of teaching resiliencesomething we want for all our clients regardless of their goals.
How To Not Let Exercise
Everyone knows how it feels to struggle through a when your lungs are basically shrieking that you should just stop and go back to bed. But if working out always makes your lungs feel like youre in the ninth circle of hell, you might actually have exercise-induced . Heres how you can spot the symptoms, plus expert-approved tips on managing exercise-induced asthma even if youre a workout fiend.
Asthma happens when the airways in your lungs narrow and produce excess mucus to the point where you experience issues like coughing, a whistling sound when you breathe , chest tightness and pain, and shortness of breath, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute . Some people only experience this domino effect while theyre working out, which is when exercise-induced asthma enters the picture.
Experts actually often refer to exercise-induced asthma with the more specific name exercise-induced bronchoconstriction. This is to clarify that while strenuous exercise may trigger the airways in your lungs to narrow , its not actually an underlying cause of asthma, according to the Mayo Clinic.
These symptoms can start just a few minutes into a workout session, but like with most , everyone is different. Ive had patients be well into exercise and then they cant function, Raymond Casciari, M.D., a pulmonologist at St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, Calif., tells SELF.
Also Check: Can You Be In The Military With Asthma