When anyone has difficulty breathing, it is best to call an ambulance immediately. However, if this heavy breathing is not an emergency, you may not even need care. Try to reduce your activity level, take a break or even treat the cause of the condition, and incorporate changes in your lifestyle in the medium and long term. If the problem occurs during sleep, change position or contact a doctor. Ultimately, he's the one who's going to help sort things out for good.
Method 1 of 4: Seeking Immediate Relief
Step 1. Reduce your level of physical activity and see if things get better
Many people start breathing heavily because they're exercising, especially when they're pushing the bar. In these cases, you can reduce the level or even stop for a few minutes and drink water to see if there is any improvement. And don't worry so much: this won't always happen, as your conditioning will gradually improve.
Always respect your body's limits. If you feel yourself getting tired, slow down or stop for a while
Step 2. Have a glass of water if you think you are dehydrated
Sometimes dehydration can cause abnormal tiredness - which makes breathing heavy. Fortunately, at these times it is enough to have a few glasses of water. If this is the real cause of the problem, it will resolve itself after you drink fluids.
If you prefer, take an isotonic to rehydrate and increase the level of electrolytes in the body at the same time
the human body's internal temperature is almost always very high on hot days. On these occasions, take a bottle of water and even a portable fan wherever you go.
Step 3. Stop and rest if you feel your body is too hot
Anyone is at risk of becoming breathless when their body temperature rises above normal, especially during times of physical activity. When this happens to you, sit in a cool place and wait for your breathing to normalize.
If you are sick, keep resting until you start to feel better
Step 4. Take off some tighter garments
Clothing that is too small or tight can limit breathing, especially if you're wearing something that's made precisely to compress your body (such as styling girdles). Therefore, wear only looser and easy-to-remove pieces.
If a certain piece sticks to you, it's better to use another one
Step 5. Take an antihistamine if you have any seasonal allergies
Sometimes certain seasonal allergies cause inflammation that constricts the airways - which makes breathing heavy. Depending on the case, you may have bouts of sneezing, itchy eyes and runny nose. Fortunately, it may be enough to take an antihistamine to control your symptoms at these times.
- Consult a physician before taking any antihistamines.
- Many antihistamines cause drowsiness. If this is a problem for you, look for alternatives that don't: cetirizine, loratadine, etc.
Step 6. Try deep breathing techniques when you are anxious
Start by counting how many times air enters and leaves your body. Place your hands on your rib cage, inhale as you count to ten, and feel the expansion. Then exhale slowly, also counting to ten, and feel the contraction. Repeat this process until you calm down.
You can also learn to breathe through your diaphragm, which is even better. Inhale until your belly expands before your rib cage and chest; hold the air while counting from one to three seconds; then exhale from the chest, following with your belly
Method 2 of 4: Changing Your Lifestyle
Step 1. Maintain a healthy weight according to your age and height
Having a few extra pounds on your body makes anyone breathless and tired in less time, which increases the chances of heavy breathing. Furthermore, this also creates the risk of other conditions - such as sleep apnea, which affects the airflow. You'd better maintain a healthy weight, which depends on your height and age.
- If you need to lose weight, eat a diet rich in lean protein and fresh produce. Also, minimize your sugar intake.
- Physical activity every day is the best way to control your weight, but consult a doctor before you start training.
consult a nutritionist or doctor to find out what is the ideal weight for you. Each person has a different goal, which depends on factors such as general health, activity level and physical type.
Step 2. Do 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day
Exercising (aerobic and anaerobic) is great not only for maintaining a healthy weight, but also for regulating the functioning of the heart and lungs. As problems in these organs can contribute to heavy breathing, a good workout ends up having a positive effect.
- Talk to your doctor and ask if you are able to exercise.
- Walking, running, swimming, dancing, wrestling, riding the elliptical, and the like are great activity options.
Step 3. Learn to control your anxiety
Anxiety can cause various breathing problems, even causing a feeling of tightness in the chest. Therefore, look for ways to better deal with these symptoms. Here are some useful techniques:
- Do breathing exercises, such as counting how many times air enters and leaves your lungs.
- Breathe through your diaphragm five to seven times to distribute oxygen throughout your body and calm your nervous system.
- Meditate for five to ten minutes a day.
- Use mindfulness techniques to focus on the present.
- Start trading your negative thoughts for positive ones, such as "I'm more than enough" and "I'll be fine."
- Start taking more care of your appearance.
Step 4. Stop smoking
You probably know how bad smoking is to your breath, don't you? Still, breaking this habit can be difficult - even more so when you're alone. Luckily, your doctor may be able to recommend some resources and tools to help with this process.
For example, your doctor could prescribe gums or nicotine patches or specific medications, as well as help you find a support group for people who are going through similar situations
Step 5. Clean your house often
Many people don't realize it, but the presence of dust, animal hair and other allergens in the home contributes a lot to heavy breathing. So, clean the area from time to time so you don't have any flare-ups.
- You can even install an air purifier or HEPA filter to clean your home.
- Make it a habit to take off your shoes when you get home. This also reduces the circulation of allergens through the air.
Method 3 of 4: Improving Your Breathing During Sleep
Step 1. Do not consume alcohol before going to sleep
Alcohol is a depressant substance and therefore relaxes the muscles at the back of the throat. This is one of the causes of snoring attacks and other breathing problems during sleep.
Do not take any medication that is also a depressant, such as muscle relaxants
Step 2. Avoid eating heavy meals before going to sleep
Overeating a few hours before bedtime can make your breathing heavy and cause snoring attacks. Try to schedule your dinner between two and four hours before you rest.
Step 3. Sleep on your side, not on your back
When we sleep on our back, the tongue and soft palate end up blocking the airway - which can make breathing difficult. To make matters worse, the extra weight on the chest or belly can put pressure on the lungs and create new problems. The ideal resting position is on your side.
If you end up on your back while you're sleeping, place a tennis ball or other soft object behind your pajama shirt. That way, your body will be uncomfortable trying to change position and get used to being on its side. There are also devices that vibrate whenever the person gets the wrong way
Step 4. Elevate your head on the bed
Studies indicate that raising the head can resolve heavy breathing problems, improve the quality of rest, and reduce the symptoms of sleep apnea. Try lifting the area about 6 inches with a pillow or other support.
Step 5. Watch for symptoms of sleep apnea
You may be breathing heavily because of sleep apnea, which happens when the body periodically stops breathing during rest. The condition is serious, but there are several simple treatments. See a doctor if you notice one or more of the following symptoms:
- Loud snoring.
- Strong sighs in sleep.
- Dry mouth on waking.
- Headache in the morning.
- Drowsiness during the day.
- Difficulty concentrating.
Step 6. Talk to your doctor about sleep apnea treatment options
If your doctor determines that you have mild sleep apnea, he or she may recommend some lifestyle changes. However, if the condition is moderate or severe, it may be better to go for additional treatments. Here are some possible options:
- One oral device that projects the jaw forward and improves breathing. This is the simplest and easiest treatment option, although it is not as effective as others.
- the device of continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) is the most common treatment option for sleep apnea. It includes a mask that facilitates breathing at night.
- the device of bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP or BPAP) also improves breathing at night, although it is not as helpful as CPAP. On the other hand, some people believe it is more comfortable.
you can have surgery if nothing else works, but your doctor will likely try other treatment options first.
Method 4 of 4: Seeking Medical Care
Step 1. Go to the emergency room if you are short of breath or have a cardiorespiratory problem
Heavy breathing can indicate a serious condition, especially if you have other specific health problems. In these cases, it's best to seek care as soon as possible - even to avoid heart attacks and the like.
If you are unable to go to the emergency room, call an ambulance as soon as possible
Step 2. See a doctor if you think you have a respiratory infection
Certain infections, such as colds, flu, pneumonia, sinusitis, and bronchitis, can make breathing heavy. Although these conditions usually improve without medical treatment, you will need care if your symptoms get too strong.
- For example: it could be that the viral infection causes a bacterial infection - which, in turn, needs antibiotic treatment; or it could be that inflammation and discharge block your airway, preventing you from breathing on your own without difficulty.
- Your doctor will recommend the best treatment options according to your symptoms.
Step 3. See a doctor if you experience asthma symptoms
Symptoms of asthma include burning, panic or dizziness, and difficulty breathing. The condition usually appears in childhood, but can occur at any age. If so, you run the risk of heavy breathing before or during an attack. The doctor will recommend the use of the inhaler and perhaps specific medications.
If you know you have asthma, use the inhaler whenever you have difficulty breathing
Step 4. See a therapist if you are too anxious
The therapist will help resolve the issues that cause this anxiety. The picture is complicated, but it doesn't have to be the end of the world - as long as you get help.
Seek a therapist who is experienced in treating people with anxiety
ask a doctor or acquaintance to recommend a therapist. If necessary, do an internet search.