Shallow Breathing Anxiety

Shallow Breathing Anxiety

Shallow Breathing Anxiety; two things that go together.

Anxiety is a hard house guest to live with because she arrives with a suitcase full of unpleasant feelings and sensations. Shallow breathing anxiety is one of her more common symptoms but by no means the only one, just check out this long list;

Physical symptoms

  • Racing heartbeat  
  • Shortness of breath  
  •  Nausea
  •  Chest tightness 
  •  Dry mouth
  •  Pins and needles
  •  Butterflies in stomach   
  • Sweating

Emotional symptoms

  • Inner tension    
  • Agitation  
  •  Tremor
  • Fear of losing control
  • Irritability 
  • Feelings of detachment
  • Dread that something catastrophic is going to happen

Shallow breathing can be a particularly frightening sensation and for those of us with strong anxiety the need to understand the symptoms is evident.

However a quick google search can bring back some alarming prognosis including heart failure and more. This inevitably adds to anxiety and causes some serious health scares. If you suffer shallow breathing anxiety and have not spoken with a doctor, it's always a good to check your heart and lungs. But you'll find that shallow breathing is in almost all cases caused by anxiety.

When this is the case, it's clear it's time to take control of anxiety or let anxiety control you. Understanding the physical reasons for the shallow breathing anxiety is a good first step.

Fight and FlightWhen feeling highly anxious our fight and flight response is triggered. This response keeps us alive in a physically dangerous situation by getting us ready to fight a threat or run away from it. It's like, for a moment we have super powers, our senses are heightened and our physical body changes; cortisol and adrenalin charge through our system,our heartbeat speeds up and breath comes faster so to get more oxygen to the body and muscles.

The thing about our super powers brought on by fight or flight is it is only designed to be temporary which is good because too much cortisol, adrenalin and faster breathing is not good for the body long term. But anxiety causes us to feel under threat often and for long periods of time meaning our fight or flight is turned on for much longer than is necessary or healthy.

Concerning shallow breathing anxiety, we see the faster breathing over longer periods of time can cause us to hyperventilate. 

Hyperventilation is when your body takes in more oxygen then it needs and expels too much carbon dioxide. When we hyperventilate it can feel as though we're not getting enough oxygen, so we start breathing deeper. Unfortunately this only makes the hyperventilation worse. When our carbon dioxide levels are imbalanced, our body experiences a range of problems related to poor blood oxygen levels. and have effects on the body producing these symptoms;

  • Chest Pains
  • Lightheadedness
  • Weakness and Tingling
  • Feeling Feint
  • Rapid Heartbeat

Panic attacks are often triggered by this hyperventilation, and during a panic attack, when anxiety is at an all-time high, often breathing becomes even more rapid. This worsens the anxiety symptoms and causes the body to feel as though something really very terrible is going wrong. Find out more about anxiety attacks.

So shallow breathing is part of the typical anxiety and stress result caused by the fight or flight response.

And one of the most effective ways to counteract the stress response can be by taking time and learning how to relax.

When a person is relaxed they are in the opposite state from the fight or flight stress response, here they breathe through their nose in a slow, even and gentle way. So by deliberately copying a relaxed breathing pattern we can calm the nervous system that controls the body’s involuntary functions.

Controlled breathing can cause physiological changes that include:

  • Lowered blood pressure and heart rate
  • Reduced levels of stress hormones in the blood
  • Reduced lactic acid build-up in muscle tissue
  • Balanced levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood
  • Improved immune system functioning
  • Increased physical energy
  • Increased feelings of calm and wellbeing.

Breathing Exercises 

Slow Breathing – If you are feeling shallow breathing anxiety now you will want to slow down your breathing and fight the urge to take deeper breaths as too much oxygen will make the symptoms worse. Right now try taking slow, deliberate breaths. Take at least 5 seconds to breathe in. Hold for 2 seconds. Then breathe out for 6 to 7 seconds. This will help you regain some of your carbon dioxide while still allowing you to breathe comfortably.

Breathing Retraining –  At first taking deliberate breaths can feel strange, soon it will feel great!  But very quickly our busy life can get back in the way and our bodies forget how to breathe in this healthy way.  If you suffer anxiety regularly, consider a yoga or meditation class. Many people believe that both are very useful for controlling anxiety, But beyond that, both involve breathing re-training that will spill into your everyday life. By regularly reminding your body how to breathe in a healthier way you have a powerful tool to release yourself from anxieties tight grip as well as reaping the health, beauty and emotional benefits into your everyday life.

Breathing is one of the greatest, cheapest and effective ways to cope with feelings of anxiety.  Its well worth the time you put in. Start now by following along with me in a slow easy breathing thechnique below. Find out more about breathing


Breathe deeply for Shallow Breathing Anxiety Relief



Hypnosis for Shallow Breathing

Another great way to experience the relaxation response on a regular basis is by using hypnosis to help. Hypnosis and self hypnosis can help you experience this place of relaxation where the body refreshes and repairs, rejuvenates and re-energises.

And hypnosis and self-hypnosis have proven very effective in dealing with anxiety. In the short term, while experiencing the relaxed state that hypnosis and trance creates you can not be anxious at the same time. In the long term, aiming at dealing with the roots of your anxiety is important, visiting with a experienced hypnotherapist who will work with you one on one is a smart idea.

Self-Hypnosis for shallow breathing

For smart action now hypnosis for smart girls has created these hypnotic audios to help with your shallow breathing anxiety;

If you are prone to experiencing anxiety attacks, it can be a distressing experience, and shallow breathing becomes a real problem. This audio is designed to help stop and shorten a panic attack by encouraging controlled comfortable breathing while giving you coping statements to focus on to get you through the high level panic and anxiety.

Breathe deeply is a hypnotic introduction to comfortable breathing, it encourages the listener to take a few minutes to relax and focus and concentrate on breathing to retrain the bodes natural tendencies and reap all the benefits of healthy breathing.

Anxiety has a nasty habit of turning up where she's not invited. Night time anxiety can ruin sleep and good quality sleep is soooo important. This audio is designed to calm and ready the body and mind for sleep with a gentle release of worries and fears. Helping us all get a good night zzzzzzzzz.

Affirmations are like a super smoothies for the mind, jam packed of healthy thoughts, statements and beliefs. by listening to good thoughts we work, over time and resetting all the negative thoughts. Affirmations for anxiety relief is designed to help us begin to view and experience anxiety in a different way.


If highly anxious and fearful  feelings have arrived after a recent death, loss of health, relationship upheaval, and you truly feel unable to cope, hypnosis 4 smart girls is not what you need right now. Don't  suffer in silence help is out there, please speak to your doctor/health care provider for further advice or look here for someone to talk to


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If you are feeling deeply unhappy, desperate or out-of-control, Hypnosis 4 smart girls is not what you need at this time. Don't suffer in silence, speak to someone; trusted friend, colleague, family member or G.P. However bleak things seem, help is out there for you so please keep looking. Click here for suggestions of where to start.

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