Breathing issues...again

whiteraven

MyPTSD Pro
Ever since before I went to Kindergarten, I've had issues with breathing during anxiety. I have a hard time taking a deep breath and sometimes also have heart palpitations with it. I remember my dad telling me to "stop breathing like that" when I was little. It comes and goes - I don't remember any issues with it in high school, but it returned in college. Then it was back in my last job.

And now...here we are again. Started when I was in the hospital and has been off and on since.

Doctors across the board have said it's anxiety. The palpitations are PVCs, although I mostly don't have those anymore. I hate it. It takes so much energy. And I have no idea why I'm having issues with it again. The costochondritis makes it worse because it causes my ribcage and sternum to be very sore, so breathing deeply makes then hurt worse.
 

Charbella

Confident
I’m sorry your experiencing that!

My anxiety often manifests in the same way. Thinking about it for me makes it worse so I’ve tried walking around with my dogs hoping they’ll get up to something. Sometimes calling to talk to someone helps. Not about the anxiety or breathing just to talk.

Is yours worse at night too? Apparently heart rate tends to increase at night.

What were you hospitalized for?

Mine is such that I can’t be around anyone who’s breathing is noisy and irregular. It’s like my brain takes over and I try to match their breathing.
 

arfie

MyPTSD Pro
i share that problem, raven. oxygen deprivation is one of my more consistent anxiety symptoms. i quite literally hold my breath until i turn blue.

which makes breathing exercises my most critical anxiety management tools. of course i wish i didn't have to, but wishing never got a job done. the less energy i waste on wishing, the sooner my brain, etc., will receive the oxygen needed to function properly.

steadying support while you find what works for you.
 

StillPen

MyPTSD Pro
@whiteraven, I experience increased heart palpitations with my anxiety but not breathing issues. However, I feel so much for you because while wearing a mask through all this Covid stuff, my brain tells me I can't breathe...it must be an anxiety thing, because as soon as I take the mask off, I can breathe just fine...it is just an an aweful feeling when you cannot take in full deep breaths.
 

shimmerz

MyPTSD Pro
A healer helped me through this. She had to drill it into my head that I should not be trying to fix this while it was happening but rather I should be practicing 4 - 5 square breathing while I was feeling strong. I would pick a trigger as well (a positive trigger) so I could call it up at will.

So for instance, I would practice 5-5-5-5 breathing when I woke up in the morning (I am strongest at this time). I would have a glass of warm water with me at the time (because warm water is a comfort thing for me). In between breaths I would drink the warm water. Now, any time I felt my breathing go off i would drink warm water and it would trigger the 5 square breathing for myself.

Not sure if this is helpful, and if not, please ignore. My best wishes for your continued health through this difficult situation.
 
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