Your diaphragm, a vital muscle that allows you to breathe, may be strengthened via the practice of diaphragmatic breathing. This type of breathing is also known as abdominal breathing or belly breathing.
The advantages of diaphragmatic breathing are numerous and extend to your entire body. It serves as the foundation for practically all relaxation and meditation practices, which may help you manage your stress, lower your blood pressure, and maintain other vital biological functions.
Patients with GI issues are taught this easy approach to help them manage stress brought on by their symptoms.
It is useful to urge the body to calm down by concentrating on the breath. When using diaphragmatic breathing, the abdomen moves for each breath, expanding during inhalation and contracting with exhalation, rather than the chest. It helps to deliberately focus on each breath to divert attention and calm the mind.
Learning diaphragmatic breathing has several benefits.
The method helps by:
By gently massaging internal organs including the stomach and intestines while the diaphragm is activated, abdominal discomfort, urgency, bloating, and constipation can be lessened. You might think of the parasympathetic system as the body's relaxation response or the "rest and digest" state. When you breathe diaphragmatically, you are supporting the stimulation of the parasympathetic system. Certain GI-related circumstances can benefit from diaphragmatic breathing:
Several illnesses that have symptoms that have an impact on breathing can be helped by diaphragmatic breathing, including:
Even though some conditions can benefit from the use of diaphragmatic breathing, this shouldn't be the primary strategy. This approach can be used in conjunction with other treatments that your doctor has suggested.
It is typical to experience some unease or lightheadedness after practicing diaphragmatic breathing for the first time. If you begin to feel dizzy, breathe more rapidly. Allow yourself some time to settle after a session of diaphragmatic breathing; do not get up too soon.
Although it takes practice, diaphragmatic breathing is a fantastic technique for relaxation. As you get better at it, you'll soon be able to perform it while standing, walking, or even driving with your eyes open.
On its own, diaphragmatic breathing isn't always beneficial. Deep breathing is frequently most successful as a treatment when paired with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or hypnosis, according to research on ANS-related disorders including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
If you have a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) or other related mental health issues, deep breathing exercises may not always be beneficial.
The multiple worries or anxieties that go along with GAD can linger for up to several months or years, and they may feel difficult to control. If deep breathing techniques don't seem to be helping, stress may increase as a result.
The best method for assisting someone in coping with anxiety or other mental health issues is typically a technique like CBT.