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Avatar universal

Yawning and Shortness of Breath

I occassionally get bouts of excessive yawning and shortness of breath.  I have found that adding salt to my diet cures this condition.  This started three months ago.  I was wondering what condition would cause the yawning with shortness of breath and then for it to be cured with increased salt in my diet.  Fortunately my blood pressure is low to normal so even with the added salt my blood pressure is still ok.  I have been to several doctors and none of them have an answer except to say that salt deprivation during exercise can cause symptoms, but that is not the case with me.  I have been told it could be a cardiac, endocrine or neurological problem.  I have been to all those doctors with no help.  Some others here with good blood pressure and the same problem may want to try the salt.  Start with a 1/4 table spoonful.  1/2 usually does it for me.  Ask your doctor first.
55 Responses
251132 tn?1198078822
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
I agree that certainly you should check with your doctor.  Yawning is normal.  Shortness of breath is not.  It might be important to determine whether the two symptoms are really related temporally.
Avatar universal
you mean ingest it directly?
ive also been having the same problems but my doctor have thought it was to do with anxiety. ill make sure to give it a go.
Avatar universal
I've had the shortness of breath difficulty for about 5 years now.  It started out as only bothering me at night, but eventually began bothering me during the day.  I was told it was asthma or allergies-but I disagree.
After several years, I began feeling extremely weird.  I was waking up with sore chest muscles and/or a burning sensation in my chest. And on 3 different nights(within a 7 day period), I didn't feel comfortable going to sleep for concerns that I may not wake up.  Shortly after the third day I admitted myself into the hospital.
When I got there, my BP was at 183/103 with a high pulse rate. After $13000 of medical expenses and 3 days in the hospital (thank god for insurance)I was told lungs, heart, oxygen level, and everything was fine, I just had high blood pressure.
Maybe the excessive yawning is an early sign of high blood pressure.  Mine was only borderline or under when the SOB first began, but now it is dangerously high.  Hopefully the meds will help! Don't know if this is the answer you were looking for, or even if it's the correct answer, but so far it's the only conclusion that I have came to.
Avatar universal
I take the salt directly with a little water.

I am still looking into why the salt helps.

Yawning may be a sign of acidosis or other medical problems.  I was hoping to get an answer here but no luck so far.

I also have some autonomic nerve disorders so that may make my electrolytes behave poorly.

Even if salt works for you I'd still keep looking for the root cause.
Avatar universal
maybe someone can help me. i am only 19 years old and a few days ago i began to have a difficult time taking deep breathes. it seemed like only every now and then i could get in a good deep breath. i have also been having trouble yawning. i keep getting this feeling that i have to yawn, but it just wont come out. and today, the 4th day, i began to get a sore throat. i dont know if the soar throat is related to the rest. i have a severe case of tmj, and an extremely stressful job in the military. i dont know if tmj or being under constant stress all the time are a factor, but any advice or information somebody has, i would very much appreciate hearing it. thanks.
Avatar universal
I have some respiratory, sleep appnea and other problems and I too noticed that salt does something for me.  Unfortunately, I discovered this by eating potato chips before bedtime.  I don't know what the salt does but I sleep undisturbed and wake up relaxed.  Doctor's have not been able to tell me why my brain doesn't want to shut off so I can sleep... but, salt seems to do something... I also have low blood pressure..

(obviously, I cannot eat potato chips every night. but it works??? who knows why?? any comments?
Avatar universal
So I know it sounds silly; however, this blog is the closest I have come to understanding my SOB and yawning.  I have gone through the normal routine with the doctor and they seem clueless. I have found that when eating Sunflower Seeds, my SOB gets significantly better.  I suspect that it is the salt that is making me feel better and alleviating my SOB.  Did anyone come up with a better explanation for why the salt works?  I concur with Terryaz, I can't sit around eating Sunflower Seeds all day, every day.  Ideas?
Avatar universal
I have been experiencing SOB for 2 years on and off, and it mainly occurs when I am eating. It drives me crazy! I have been to the doctor, who did a lung saturation test, and mine was better than average. He said the problem musst be psychological, however I know it's not.
I'm also always trying to yawn, just so that I get a full breath. Does anyone know what this SOB is caused by?
Avatar universal
I have been experiencing SOB for 2 years on and off, and it mainly occurs when I am eating. It drives me crazy! I have been to the doctor, who did a lung saturation test, and mine was better than average. He said the problem musst be psychological, however I know it's not.
I'm also always trying to yawn, just so that I get a full breath. Does anyone know what this SOB is caused by?
Avatar universal
i have recently noticed that i have been yawning alot and feel short of breath. Now i can only take deep breaths in when i yawn it seems like. this doesn't occur everyday ,but mainly during the day or before i go to bed. Also i seem to feel a wierd feeling almost like i'm gasping or light headed. When i went to the hospital they said that my oxygen level was fine, and blood pressure looks great. my doctor put me on that advir disc put it doesn't seem to help, and days after a severe case of this i get upper chest pain. CAN ANYBODY TELL ME WHAT THE HECK THIS IS PLEASE!!!!!!
Avatar universal
I have had this problem for as long as I can remember. My parents took me to the DR when I was little and they said it was all in my head. Now that I'm 25 with 2 kids I still have the problem. My heart and everything else looks fine. I have no idea what causes my SOB and constant yawning. I just feel like I can't get a good breath unless I yawn. I hate it. It is so embarrassing. I haven't tried that salt thing but I definitly will! I'm also open to any further ideas.....
Avatar universal
I can't believe I found other people with this problem.  I too have the shortness of breath and feel the need to yawn to get a good breath.  I have allergies and am also on Advair and Singular which helps with my allergies but doesn't do anything for the shortness of breath and cronic yawning.  Is anyone else on Singular and Advair, could that be causing this?  I am going to also try the salt thing but if anyone has any input as to why this is happening I would love to know!
Avatar universal
I'm glad i found this site and many of the comments here I can totally relate with.  I have had, off and on for a few years now, the feeling that I need to yawn to get a full breath.  And most of the time I can't get the full yawn in and so I will try to just breath deep and stretch my body out as if that will help.  It ends up hurting my lungs after i've tried to ywan a couple times, it feels as though I'm inhailing enough oxygen, but my lungs don't expand enough for all the air.  I don't know, I'm sure thats not whats happening, but that's the best way to describe it. I told my OB about it and was sent to a specialist, who like many of you have been told was probably stress.  I COMPLETELY DISAGREE.  It is so frustrating, especially some nights when I get it in bed and can't breath, I almost start freaking out and want to call the hospital!  Its that bad sometimes!  Well, the only place I have ever seen a symptom like this for a condition is when I was looking up information on thyroid problems.  One of the syptoms was "have to yawn to get a complete breath"-or something along those lines.  I am planning on talking to my doctor next month about getting my thyroid tested-I don't remember if it was a symptom for an underactive or overactive thyroid.  ( I also have other syptoms of thyroid problems).  Anyways, hope this helps in some way.
Avatar universal
I've had the same yawning and sob. The Asthma tests indicate not a true asthma but sensitive airways.  I've noticed a pattern, although I'm not allergic to dust when tested, whenever I've had to clean up in my basement or at work in a slightly dusty environment, the sob comes out of nowhere and lasts for weeks.  I do know that it clears up after a few weeks but it's almost debilitating.  I believe that there is a connective tissue disorder out there (not lupis) that has not been described and that these lung problems are related.  I get frequent bouts of tendonitis too, so I believe it's a connective tissue/autoimmune problem.  It sure isn't in my head, or brought on by stress.
Avatar universal
I, too, experience occasional bouts of yawning associated with shortness of breath.  It's something that no doctor I've spoken to (general practitioner or allergist) seems to understand at all.  And you feel sometimes that you're dizzy and going to have a heart attack, and some of you, as I, may even have gone to the emergency room.  These emergency trips never yield a thing.  My stats are always perfect.  I have low blood pressure, by the way, and wonder whether it has something to do with that.

I have also hyperventilated in the past, and very much associate hyperventilating with this problem.  Whenever I have excessive yawning, etc., I do breathe into a paper bag for a while (sometimes, three times or more with a small break in between).  But I'm having this breathing problem today, and I don't know that the paper bag thing is working for me.

I've never heard of the salt thing.  Sounds very strange, but I'll try it anyway.  I will say that this problem can very easily feed on itself and make you panic, and then you can exacerbate the problem entirely.  When I've had these problems, I've never felt as if something overly worrying caused me to panic, but I can say that I do get panicked sometimes when I can't stop this yawning/shortness of breath thing.  It really scares me.
Avatar universal
Finally there are people who feel my pain!

I have had this shortness of breath problem since the summer of 2004.  I have no idea why it started.  I am a 24 year old female, with not really any significant health problems.  I don't smoke.  The SOB thing just started happening one day and I don't know why, and it hasn't gone away.  

I've gone to doctors, they have ALL told me it's anxiety, and I think that's just their way of saying they don't know what else it is.  It might be anxiety, but I don't really think I have too much anxiety.  And usually I have the breathing problem when I'm relaxing or watching TV or something.  Plus, I have tried anxiety pills and they just make me relaxed, but don't help the breathing.

I have heard it could be acid reflux.  However, I never have any symptoms of acid reflux.  I don't ever get heartburn.  The problem worsens when I am lying down though, and it definitely worsens when I am eating.  I also don't ever eat spicy foods, and even foods like tomatoes (which cause acid reflux), I eat only every now and then.

The problem just feels like I'm not getting enough air, and I constantly have to yawn or breathe really deeply to feel normal.  Sometimes it is hard to get that deep breath, and it can be really annoying.  Plus, it is ongoing.  It will last for hours sometimes.  Nothing seems to help.

I really don't know what it is, and it's driving me insane.  No doctor seems to know.  I don't have any symptoms of anything else.  I don't have any pain whatsoever, just problems breathing.  Exercise doesn't seem to make it worse, usually just sitting/lying down or eating.  Sometimes nothing at all.  

I also never ever burp.  I don't know if that's related to it somehow, but I get like a weird gurgling in my chest all the time after I eat.  Maybe that's part of it, I have no idea.

If someone has these same symptoms, and has found out what it is or what can help it, PLEASE let me know.  It is ruining my life.
Avatar universal
I am blown away by all the comments posted.  I had SOB problem and excessive yawning for over a year now, and no one can tell me what is wrong.  I was tested and do have sleep apnea but the CPAP doesn't stop this problem,  I do experience this more right after I eat.  But this is an almost daily problem.  There have been a few days that I went through the whole day and never once yawned but they have been few and far between.  I had a CT scan of my lungs, ECHO, EKG, PFT, nuclear stress test, my thyroid was tested, all the blood work and can't find one solid thing, I am about 25 lbs. overweight, but I wouldn't by no means consider myself Obese.  Blood pressure is alittle bit high and am on BP med, but it is not too terribly bad.  I was a smoker of around 20 years but quit when this started.  I am only 37 and at this point I am scared to death, I do have problems sleeping at night because alot of nights I have more trouble breathing when I lay down and I get really scared that something will happen in my sleep.  I have two children that soley depend on me so I always worry about them.  

I am reading what many of you have said about salt, the only problem I have with that is because I have high blood pressure, this is not something I think I should try.  I will be seeing my doctor this week and I am going to tell her about this site and all the people that I have found with the same problem.  Like alot of you the first thing I was told was it was anxiety, but I am very familiar with anxiety and this is not what it is.  pills for anxiety will relax you but doesn't make the symptoms go away, I still have trouble breathing.  Keep us posted
Avatar universal
Hi, its me again!  Just wondering how many of you are ex smokers.  The last poster just made me a little curious because I am also in my late thirties (38) and had smoked for about 15 years and quite when this yawning/sob started about 3 years ago.  The yawning/sob continued on and off over the last 3 years and I have been put on Advair, had EKG, stress test, etc. etc. and everything came out ok (thank god).  But still no explanation for this yawning/sob.  I just recently came across this website Breathing.com and on the website it said you can get the frequent yawning and sob from not breathing correctly.  I am just wondering if because of being a smoker  all those years and then not smoking if maybe we just have to learn how to breath again. They said that we take breathing for granted that our bodies will just do it naturally and that is not the case and you can relearn how to breath correctly from the abdomen and not the chest.  Did you ever watch a baby sleep and you see their bellies go up and down.  Anyhow I did buy their dvd/cd combo (#176 program kit) so I will let you know how it works out.  Wouldn't it be nice if it was that easy!  Check out the website and let me know what y'all think of it.  From what I remember you can type in frequent yawning or shortness of breath and it kind of talks about what we have been experiencing.  Good luck!
Avatar universal
thanks JBAR for the information I will definetly check it out.  I have also been to a website, not that one, but found a posting about not breathing from your diaphram, and it would be wonderful if it was that simple.
Avatar universal
to leslieandwill, keep me posted on what you find out, after reading your post again, our situations are so much alike, the smoking thing, 25 lbs. overweight, 2 kids and I have had all of those tests too to see what is going on with me!  If I didn't know any better I would have thought I wrote your post, lol.  Anyhow to leslieandwill and all of the prior posts, keep updating this post and maybe we can all work together to cure us all of this most annoying and sometimes scary quirk!
Avatar universal
Salt and sodium can increase blood pressure, so it
Avatar universal
Hi everyone,
I have the exact same SOB, can't get a good deep breath, and have to yawn to feel satisfied feeling.  This is too weird, I am 35, I smoked for almost 20 years, and a week after this SOB started I quit, I am also around 25 lbs overweight.  This has been constant for me for 2 months, some days are better than others.  I went to the doc, and she said it was anxiety but she sent me for a chest Xray anyway, it was normal, then she put me on Zoloft, I tried it for 3 weeks and it made me loopy so I quit. Now today I am going for a breathing test I guess to check for asthma, which I dont think I have. I have been all over the web searching for info on this, and there are so many people with the same symptoms, and no one knows what is causing it, some are smokers, some have never smoked, and exercise regularly.
Avatar universal
I was surprised but the "salt" thing improves some of the inability to take an effective breath for me too!  I have low blood pressure.  Salty (non-garlic) pickle is a low cal way.
Avatar universal
Well, I have now had these same symptoms for nearly a year now, mostly all the time. I still am not sure of the cause. although, i had a cold for the past few days, and i was like "hey" my breathing thing is gone, untill i had a milkshake today as i was feeling much better. 2 hrs later, I found my breathing stuffed up again.(simplest way to describe it) I had noticed this worsened one time before, after eating ice cream. i think it has something to do with diary products for me. i usually stay away from diary products anyways because they give me heart burn. Now i'm starting to think they cause this breathing thingy too...
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