Anxiety is a normal response to daily stress. However, when worry becomes prevalent in our everyday lives, it can be disabling. Anxiety disorders affect nearly 1 in 5 adults in the United States. Women are more than twice as likely as men to get an anxiety disorder in their lifetime.

Benefits of Breath Work

Breath work is one of many tools we can use to get our anxiety under control. The best part is it is free and doesn’t require any equipment or training. Breath work is a practice that focuses on controlling the breath to improve mental well-being. This practice can range from simple breathing exercises to more complex meditation and yoga techniques. It is designed to help people develop awareness and control of their breathing patterns and use the breath to create a state of relaxation, focus and well-being.

How Breath Work Works

Breathing exercises have been shown to be effective in reducing stress and anxiety levels. When we are stressed, our breathing becomes shallow and rapid, leading to increased heart rate and muscle tension. By focusing on slow and deep breathing, we can activate the relaxation response and calm the mind and body.

Simple Breath Work Exercises

Here are a few simple exercises to get started:

  1. Deep Breathing: Find a comfortable place to sit or lie down, close your eyes, and focus on taking slow, deep breaths. Inhale deeply through your nose, hold for a few seconds, then exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat this for several minutes, focusing on your breathing and letting go of any thoughts or distractions.
  2. Pursed Lip Breathing: This exercise involves breathing out slowly through pursed lips, as if you were blowing out a candle. This can help slow down the breathing and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.
  3. Diaphragmatic Breathing: This exercise involves breathing from the diaphragm, or the belly, instead of the chest. Place one hand on your belly and the other on your chest, and focus on breathing deeply into your belly.

Breath work is an important aspect of self-care that can have a profound on your mental health. Whether you are looking to reduce stress and anxiety or simply decompress from a stressful situation or day, breath work is a simple and effective way to achieve these benefits.

Austin Oaks Hospital

Austin Oaks Hospital specializes in comprehensive psychiatric services for adults and adolescents.

Located in South Austin, Texas, we strive to create a warm and welcoming environment for our patients. Some of our services include adult, adolescent, women’s wellness and outpatient programs. Our exclusively women program particularly helps to treat major depression, PTSD, relapse prevention, mental health issues related to fertility (loss of pregnancy, postpartum depression, breastfeeding and menopause), and more.

To contact us give us a call 512-798-4899.