Respiratory Disorders Expert Forum
Feel the need to take deep breaths
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Feel the need to take deep breaths

For the last few weeks, I've felt the urge to take a deep breath and sigh every few minutes. The deep breath is very satisfying when I take it.

I'm wondering what the cause for this could be.

A few details:

I'm a 39 year old male, nonsmoker and generally healthy. I have no known allergies, and no history of asthma (though my daughter was recently diagnosed as having relatively mild asthma).

In the last few years I haven't been getting nearly enough exercise, but I recently started myself on a jogging program to rectify this.

One of the odd things is that I don't feel particularly out of breath when I'm exercising. In other words, when I go jogging and my respiration rate goes up, this urge seems to go away.
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I am not exactly an expert, but I do have some advice that might help. The first thing I thought of when I read this was that you may be having mild anxiety or stress. The fact that you don't have breathing problems when you exercise points to this, I think. There are three areas where you breathe from: the throat, the upper chest and your stomach basically. When we are stressed (actually most people) breathe shorter, more rapid breaths rather than slowly breathing in filling the throat, then the upper chest, finally the belly and then exhaling (kids breathe more like this). In meditation they focus on deep breathing exercises doing this type of progressive breathing to promote awareness of how you're breathing and of course for overall relaxation.

Here's a great article about deep breathing that everybody could derive some benefit from doing:
http://health.discovery.com/centers/althealth/deepbreath/deepbreathe.html
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