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trouble breathing
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trouble breathing

I have trouble breathing.After awhile of breathing i just have to take a deep breath or it feels like i will suffocate.I have had all tests for my heart done by my cardiologist,even a heart cath and it is normal.I lost my daughter in an auto accident three years ago and just lost my youngest brother two months ago.My doctor says it might be stress.I do have feelings alot that i am going to die.My doctor wants to put me on Paxil an antidepressant but i take Ultram for the pain of my arthritis and it says on warning label not to mix these drugs.I got on line and it says not to take most antidepressant medicines with Ultram.I am just so scared sometimes that i want be able to get my breath.Does anyone out there have this problem? If so please help me.Thanks,sunny 2
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I would suggest working with your doctor about the cause of this problem and the medications that you are taking. It is possible to have anxiety reactions that can cause the symptoms that you are describing.
33 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Sunny, i have also been experiencing this..I feel like I can't get a deep breath and the only way is to try to make myself yawn or try to take a deep sighing breath ..I have been told it is anxiety ..do you have the same symptoms? when I experience this at night I am afraid I will not wake up.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi Guys - I have a word document that I would like to send you both if you wish to post your email addresses for me.  I too have your symptoms - it's Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome, #1 complaint being you feel as if you cannot take a deep breath, with frequent deep sighing and yawning.  And yes, you feel as if you will suffocate.  The harder you try to take a deep breath, the more difficult it becomes because what you are actually doing is, every time you inhale deeply, it keeps the level of carbon dioxide & oxygen out of balance just enough to keep the symptoms going, usually all day.  There are two types of hyperventilation - acute and chronic.  Acute is the one most people recognize - fast, rapid, shallow breathing.  It's more easily recognized than the chronic one, which even doctors don't recognize because the patient will not appear to be having any breathing difficulties.  Chronic is caused by 'over-breathing' without your even being aware of it, meaning you're taking in too much air.  Anxiety is linked to it, and each will trigger the other so you end up in a cycle that you can't break.  I knw - I've been in that cycle for the last two months and have just now started slowly getting better.  If you both would like to post an email address, I would be more than happy to forward this document to you.  You guys take care, and hope to hear from you soon......
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for your input shana, i would really like if you could send me the info..my email is ski-n-***@**** symptoms last for days sometimes until I finally stop thinking about it ..only to come back again
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Avatar_n_tn
I too have been experiencing this. I have been to a cardiologist to have my heart checked and it is fine. My Pulmonary doc diagnosed me with asthma after flunking the Methacholine Challenge test ( breathing test ). I have been taking meds for asthma for the past 3 months and they only help at times. I sometimes think there is more to it than asthma, or maybe not asthma at all. I'm not as bad as I used to be but it does get frustrating always having to take a deep breath and then feeling like you didn't get enough air in. My doc also sayd I am anxious and prescribed Paxil, which I quit taking b/c of the side effects. It made me feel like I was out of it all the time, so I now take Zoloft. I also have some reflux going on and I know that can cause asthma meds not to work. I am now taking Nexium and I do feel alot better. However, I would like some info on chronic hyper ventalation, my email is angel_eyes28217***@****

Thanks!!
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Hi Shana,yes i would like to have the info.My email is ***@**** that will help me get a handle on it.Also maybe it is anxiety.After reading the posts it seems like we all have the same symtoms (symptoms).Thanks for getting back to me Ashpie3 and angel eyes.And like you said it will not happen for a few days and back it comes.But it sure is scary.I hope we all get relief.Sunny2
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi All, I was diagnosed w/ COPD 4 yrs. ago. At that time, my doctor wanted to give me alot of pharmaceutical medications. Being somewhat of a health nut, I was quite apposed to this means of treatment. I began seeing a massage therapist who also practised cranial-sacro work (balancing the spinal/brain fluids)and also began practising pranayama (breath) yoga. I'm most happy to report that this combination has not only improved my ability to breath but has also eleviated alot of anxiety I had over loss of breath and I'm drug(pharmaceutical)free.
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Avatar_m_tn
So glad I could help, have sent you both the document I promised.  It probably is very much related to anxiety.  I've been on a low-dose anti-anxiety medicine for about a month and have finally started feeling like myself again.  They originally thought I had mild asthma but don't have the 'right' symptoms for it and inhalers don't seem to do much.  One doctor didn't think it was asthma at all and suggested Zoloft but that's an anti-depressant and I wouldn't take it, partly because I wasn't depressed, but mostly because I didn't want to take something that alters your brain chemistry.  The doctor who finally figured out what was going on prescribed low-dose Zanax for about a month and it worked (he knows I don't like taking stuff like that so he prescribed the low dose once a day, two if I felt I needed it, and it was enough to finally stop it).  A month is about as long as most people need to take it because it stops the anxiety, which alot of people aren't even aware they have, and once you do that, your body will slowly start to regulate your breathing again.  
Please let me know how you are and if any of the information helped you.  Take care.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hey,
I too have frequent bouts of symptoms you describe, and given the fact that i have panic disorder, to an extent, i assume mine is anxiety related.  I had similar problems a few years ago, and i either got better or lessened the anxiety and it eventually got ok.  I sometimes feel as if my throat is constricted when this is going on, and also notice it more sometimes when laying down, or at least notice it seems worse when laying down....Im like you guys though, it comes and goes, some days dont really notice it, so i think if it were a physical condition, it would not come and go so easily.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,

This past week I started to experience same kind of symptoms than you were describing to be symptoms of "chronic hyperventilation syndrome".  Everything started on Tuesday (6 days ago): not being able to breath in, yawning all the time..worrying about it and not being able to fall asleep because I thought I would not wake up in the morning.  I have never had any problems like this before, so it has scared me a lot.  I almoust went into an emergency room the other day, but bailed out and didn't go.  What could have triggered this?
I am wondering whether or not I should go and see a doctor?  Will they prescribe me medication for this breathing problem?  And does this problem ever go away?
I would appreciate all of your help, and comments from people who have experienced the same.
You may send me post in: ***@****
Thanks you so much.
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Avatar_n_tn
Do any of you notice when these symptoms occure, that your throat, or esophagus seems to be with pressure, or tight?  Any of you have heart palpitaions with the breathing?
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Avatar_n_tn
Finn 2002,i do not know what triggers these attacks.My doctor says it is sometimes things that happen in your life related to stress.And as i said above i recently lost two precious family members and i think about them everyday and get so upset.I don't scream or lose control.It is just such a feeling of sadness inside.My doctor said stress can kill and you don't even realize when you may need help.If you are worried i would see a doctor to at least put your mind at ease.Also i think there is definitely something to this hypreventilation theory.I am going to check it out.And to Shelley 67,i do have heart palpitations and a funny feeling in my throat,i really don't know how to describe it but it feels like my heart vibrates and stops for a second if that makes any sense.Good luck to all.






















































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Avatar_n_tn
Hi everyone, I am glad that I am not alone..thank you Shana for the info you mailed to me I really appreciate it! I have noticed that sometimes I do also get palpitations but this breathing thing is enough to drive me mad! When this breathign thing happens it's like I can't concentrate on anything else but breathing..I had problems a few years back w/ anxiety so I know that I am a very anxious person but this happens out of the blue when I don't feel anxious..I am thinking about going to my doctor and asking to be put on something for awhile..I am not big on taking things but I have 2 small children and a job that I dread going to for fear that it'll keep happening..any suggestions?
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Avatar_n_tn
Shana could you email me information on Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome, I would sure like to know more about it . Thanks ,***@****        Steve
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Avatar_m_tn
(I will send info to you in a few minutes Steve, and all of you are welcome to share it with anyone else.)  
Oh my, it seems like I touched on something big here.  How many of us are walking around with asthma diagnoses that are not correct?  Or worse, told it's all in our head?  I'm not a big fan of any kind of drugs either, but I knew unless I took something, the cycle I was in was just going to keep getting worse.  Anxiety/stress/panic disorder/hyperventilation, they're all connected.  Has anyone had the tightness in the chest with this?  Granted, this sounds like asthma to a doctor but I had no other symptoms that most people with asthma would have (as of this writing, my own doctor is not sure himself now).  I've taken Zanax now for about a month and even though I'm still experiencing the symptoms on occasion, the Zanax is what helped stop the anxiety and the panic I was experiencing along with it.  I find when I start feeling that tightness in my throat and start having difficulty taking a deep breath, I'll take the Zanax at that time and within an hour I feel pretty good and usually stay that way for the rest of the day.  I very rarely take more than one a day, and I'm assuming this will eventually go away completely.  I don't have any problems at night, though.  In fact, I breathe just fine when I'm sleeping according to my husband, deep and regular.  And I would bet that all of you do, too.  I also think it has alot to do with just our own breathing patterns, which may explain why it seems to just come out of the blue and why some of us can't really think of what triggered it.  I origianlly thought it was my 'mild asthma' that triggered mine because of all the anxiety I was having over not being able to breathe.  But now we're not sure if it simply wasn't this all along.  I do know that I find it very comforting to find so many people with the same symptoms and realize I'm not alone.  Maybe we should all post exactly what our particular symptoms are so we can compare.  I know I would be very interested in knowing if anyone has the tightness in the chest that I had so badly at the beginning and still get occasionally.  I also have the 'tightness' in my throat; my chest hurts sometimes when I inhale deeply; heart palpitations in bed, but sometimes I get them when I'm sitting quietly and then will get slightly dizzy with it.  Do others have these, also?  
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Avatar_m_tn
Just tried sending you the document and it says the email address is invalid.  Can you check it?  Will try again after I hear back from you...........
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for trying ,here's my email address again. ***@****        Steve
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Shana and everyone,

I am so glad I found this web site.  Now I realize I am not alone with this breathing issue.
As I said in my previous e-mail, my symptoms started very recently, only one week ago.  Before that I had had no signs of a breathing problem before.  I have been trying figure out what might have caused this, but I am still unsure about it.  I have had a very stressful year, though, and my boyfriend says  he is not surprised if it's linked to the problem.
Anyway, last Tuesday when everything started I was so scared.  I could not breath in properly and felt like I was not getting enough air to my lungs.  Could not take deep breaths, air would not go all the way in.  It was a very uncomfortable feeling.  At night time I had trouble falling asleep because I thought I will not wake up in the morning..
Other symptoms include: dizziness (not all the time, though), tight chest, and sometimes even feeling of having to vomit in back of my throat.
I still have these symptoms, they are not going away.  Is there any over the counter drugs that I could take or do I have to go and see a doctor for this?

P.S. Another thing, I have realized that if I am completely relaxed, for example laying on the couch and watching a movie..I do not have this breathing problem, but as soon as the movie is over it all starts again.

Shana, could you please mail me info as well.  Thanks.
***@****
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi everyone, I made a doctors appointment tomorrow to see if he can give me something for whatever it is I am suffering from..I have really bad allergies and they thought a few years back that maybe I had asthma..the thing is I don't gasp for air and I can talk when this breathing thing happens I just have to keep trying to take a deep breath or yawn.I also have palpitations and I get a tight feeling in my throat and a fuzzy feeling in my head sometimes..When I am sleeping I breath fine it is falling asleep that is hard when it's happening because I am afraid I won't wake up..I also have a constant drip in the back of my throat
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Shana,

I just read your post on chronic hyperventilation. I have all the symtoms (symptoms).  Can you please email me the info you have on it.

Thanks, my email is ***@****
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Avatar_n_tn
Shana, can you please email the info you have on chronic ventilation. I have those symtoms (symptoms).

Thanks
My email is ***@****
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Avatar_n_tn
Sorry, I posted twice.  I didn't think it took the first time.

Terur
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Avatar_m_tn
Oh my, another one.  I will send you the information I have, hope it helps you.  I'm very curious as to what symptoms you're having and how long you've been having them. Hope to hear from you soon..........
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Avatar_n_tn
You all might want to also look at a website about Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD), at http://cantbreathesuspectvcd.com

Many, many things can cause VCD, including SINUS PROBLEMS, and GASTRIC REFLUX, which several of you have mentioned symptoms of.

Anxiety worsens VCD.

Good luck to all, and SEE A GOOD DOCTOR SOON!

Sincerely, Concerned lady
http://cantbreathesuspectvcd.com
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Shana, thank you so much for the info.  I appreciate it.  My symtoms (symptoms) are not being able to get my breath and the harder I try the worse it gets.  I also get lightheaded, chest tightnes/pain sometime tingling. Sometimes I am unsteady on my feet. I feel like I'm suffocating, my throat feels like its swollen. I did not get to read the whole document yet, but what I did read are a lot of my symtoms (symptoms).  I am an anxious person and this has been going on for quite a few years.  I've had numerous tests through out the years that ruled out heart/lung problems/MS/lupus. I do have a Thyroid problem (Hashimoto Thyroiditis) but my Dr said the symtoms (symptoms) are not from that. Drs don't know what my problem is.  This article is very informative and my next dr appt I'm going to tell him about it.  Thanks again.
Terur
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Avatar_n_tn
Would you please send me the info?  I have been suffering for 3 weeks with all the same symptoms...I am exhausted from this.  I have had this in the past, but this is lasting much longer than usual.  In the past I have been given xanax, but I'm holding out hoping that it will just go away as quickly as it came!  My email is ***@****

I am "anxiously" waiting to hear from you!
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi shana,
could u mail me the info on chs, i am waiting for results of blood tests for thyroid etc at the moment but i think this is chs, i do have a stressy job and busy(stressy homelife), my job is pre-school leader.l just feel that most of the time my lungs are not big enough to take in the amount of air i need, i sigh i yawn and i do try to use breathing excersises that i have picked up. This is ok when i have the time to think about my breathing.Like at night time when there is no-one about!!!!! I some times get chest pains, but if i calm my breathing down then they go away. I start my new term next week and am fed up with it all, this started about a month before my 40th birthday, and i had an operation booked for around the same time, i assumed it was all the stress - i assumed it would go away after the op, but no, that was not to be. i have been stuck with it ever since!!!!!!!
It was great to find this area where others suffered the same as me , thanks from stressy england
My email is kim.***@****
kim.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi - I will be happy to send you the document.  Sometimes even after the stress is gone, certain people will continue to hyperventilate simply because the respiration center in their brain has been 'reset' to accept the lower carbon dioxide levels as 'normal'.  Any sighing or yawning you do is just enough to keep this level low so it keeps the symptoms ongoing.  Also, because your brain has been reset to accept the lower levels as normal for you, any increase in breathing is then perceived as air hunger.  And basically what you end up in is a vicious cycle, and honestly, the only way to break it is with regular breathing exercises done faithfully every day, twice a day.  In essense what you are doing with these exercises is retraining your brain to reset itself back to accepting normal breathing patterns, but you have to do this every day for it to be effective.  It took awhile for you to 'teach' yourself to hyperventilate and breathe incorrectly; it will also take awhile to retrain it back again.  
I will send you the document but the breathing exercises I do I found in a book, though the ones I'm sending are good too.  Take care, ok?
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Avatar_n_tn
I was diagnosed with anxiety/panic disorders about 3 months ago.  My serious issues started about 4 months back.  Since that time, I've encountered just about every anxiety related symptom that I've read about.  I was always having the shortness of breath issue, but lately, after an event that triggered a bout of severe anxiety, I started having the symptoms that all of you have been talking about.  We all seem to be in the same boat.  I am strongly against medications for myself, but they do help some people.  Short and long term therapy, including cognitive behavioral therapy, seem to be extremely important for people in their recover from these issues.  I've been in therapy for a little over 3 months now.  I believe that this is a battle that we can all win.  We just need the right tools, and some time.  So keep fighting people.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am so glad to read about this. I have had these symptoms for 20 some years... The feeling like I can't get a deep breath. It will last for awhile and then go away. It's always worse when I think about it.  Shana could you please send me the document about chs? Thanks, email is ***@****
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252585_tn?1190755806
Wow,
I cant believe that this many people have this problem I am facing. Sometimes I will be fine and than randomly I cant catch my breath. I hate that fealing like it stops me from working out because I cant breath right. I have gotten it checked and I am alright but its just real annoying me. I wish i can make it go away.     " One day I went to registyer for my classes at college and i started like breathing slow and I couldnt get my breath, feeling kind of dizzy out of no where while i was listening to the lady on which courses i want to take.. It was strange.. Yea im trying to see if there is anything over the counter I can take. I lost my job and no longer have inscurance to see a family doctor that probably may help. I have never felt this way,but i may think its from the stess of life now. Here is my e-mail Gene.***@****

                                                                      

                                                                                                   Thanks,
                                                                                                         Gene

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Avatar_n_tn
Hi, I have also been experiencing this for a little over 3 weeks now.

When the problems first started (tight chest, needing to take a deep breath, excessive yawning to catch my breath) I got really worried about it and would hyperventilate - which I had never done before and so ended up going to an emergency room. Because of this hyperventilation i got really lightheaded and my fingers would tingle. This would happen at night as well when I would worry about not waking up.

I have the problem all day long; but after seeing the doctor 2 weeks ago it is not as bad, as I am not worrying about it as much. My doctor checked all my breathing functions and said that my heart and breathing seemed fine. I was told that I may have had a oesophagal infection for which I was given a course of anti-biotics. I was also told that my problems may be worsened from my anxiety, which at the time I did not believe but now that I am less worried about it I can she that was probably true.

I have since finished my course and I think I feel slightly better but my breathing troubles are always present all day long. I was on holiday for the last 2 weeks and while there, as I was really happy and wasn't thinking about it very much, the problems were only bad when I was by myself.

I sometimes get a pain in my chest from trying to get a deep breath all day long. Also when I wake up in the mornings my chest hurts. My cough sounds quite bad but I dont just randomly cough; I usually cough after I take a deep breath of when I think it will help alleviate my chest pain.

My throat has also felt quite restricted since this started though when I was checked out by my doctor I was told it did not look very swollen.

If it helps I used to smoke but have stopped since these problems arose.

Sorry for the long post, I just thought I would put everything down. I hope we all find out what is wrong with us.

Thanks, Dean

By the way if it still feels bad by monday I am going to the doctors again and will push to be referred if I am still told that nothing is wrong. I will keep you all updated.
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Avatar_n_tn
Wow I can't believe how much all of this sounds like me. My problems started right after my high schoolgraduation. I was on my senior trip when I awoke in the middle of the night feeling like my heart was racing...this immediatley made me panic and I felt as if I couldn't get my breathe. I thought I was dying. Eventually it went away and I was fine for the rest of the trip until I returned home. That first night back was horrible. I was up all night with a feeling in my chest that is best described as an extreme tightness, I couldn't breathe, and my heart felt as if it were racing. I sat up the entire night panicking and scared to wake anyone up and startle them. I have since been to a cardiologist  and everything with my heart was checked to be ok and I must say this certainliy made some of the stress go away. I am getting ready to start college and feel this may play a large role in everything but am still somewhat concerned.  My face and fingertips feel tingly, I feel unbalanced if I am sitting and then walk, I can never catch my breathe, and I have a chest pain/tightness...so is there a certain medical diagnosis for this? and if so what is there to take to help me?
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Avatar_n_tn
A related discussion, Trouble breathing mainly at night was started.
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A related discussion, How to make it go away? was started.
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A related discussion, Hyperventilation article was started.
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A related discussion, needing to yawn all the time was started.
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A related discussion, trouble breathing was started.
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