While my wife is sleeping, her breathing rate is roughly 30 breaths per minute. This is consistent, night after night. She wakes up many days with migraine headaches that will last all day. I understand the migraines as a result of low oxygen exchange and high carbon dioxide.
What would cause consistent rapid shallow breathing night after night?
She is also a smoker.
Usually people have lower respiratory rates while sleeping...what I would do is see a doctor about this. Morning headaches can be caused by high CO2 levels as you stated. The doctor might order a sleep study where your wife would be observed and recorded through the night. Her O2 levels, heart rate and rhythm, breathing patterns, brainwaves, movement etc...are montiored closely. To check for CO2 retention, the doctor would order a blood gas or ABG first thing in the am to see if this is the case.
I hope that you get answers soon...Sunny
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