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Does stress affect your breathing???

By:

Vidhi Shastri, PT, CFMT

Have you ever felt like you are unable to take a deep breath when you are anxious, frightened or angry? With heightened stress, the diaphragm shuts down and you start using all the accessory muscles in your chest and neck… and the breathing becomes fast and very shallow. When the stress continues longer, it creates muscle imbalances, decreases blood flow and oxygenation of tissue, increases nerve sensitivity and increases heart rate – leading to a chronic fatigue.

Targeted, functional manual therapy treatment helps to improve the activation of the diaphragm, retrain the system to correct muscle imbalances and use the primary muscle for breathing. This enhances the ability of the body to take deep breaths. Other treatments like yoga, breathing exercises, relaxation techniques and meditation can also play a huge role in recovery.

Keep reading…My next blog will be focusing on immune response to stress!

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