The Importance of Breathing Normally

The image of someone hyperventilating conjures a person hunched over, body wracking as the lungs wheeze in an effort to get more oxygen into the system. It seems in the moment to be a breathing problem caused by not having enough oxygen. Research suggests, however, that hyperventilation is actually caused by getting too much oxygen into the system. Metaphorically speaking, it is sort of like flooding your body’s systems in the same way you might flood a gas tank in your car. Your car won’t start and your tissues are not able to appropriately process the influx of too much oxygen. When a person suffering acute hyperventilation actually slows down his breathing and takes in less oxygen, recovery usually comes more swiftly.

While extreme examples of acute hyperventilation can be dramatic, most people are hyperventilating all the time and they do not even realize is. It is just their unconscious way of breathing. Some specialists call this “hidden hyperventilation”. It has in common with the acute version the fact that the person is inhaling more oxygen than he needs.

The body is extremely versatile, and may react to the problem of breathing too quickly, or inhaling excessive oxygen, by narrowing the respiratory airways. This usually is accomplished through irritation and inflammation, an increase in the secretion of mucus, and by constricting the smooth muscle. This is a condition that is often characteristic of asthma, and can sometimes produce very serious symptoms. It is enlightening to consider the notion that asthma does not merely cause acute hyperventilation, but is in fact caused by hidden hyperventilation.

Some of the symptoms of over-breathing, according to some research, develop into pathologies and diseases such as asthma, sleep apnea, allergies, COPD, bronchitis, panic attacks, depression and more. Some have even listed as many as sixty different diseases as resulting from inappropriate, unconscious breathing. Among the overall population, it is estimated by different studies that anywhere from 30% to 90% of the population suffer from hidden hyperventilation. Some Russian specialists, however, see the figures as closer to the 90% group, and affirm that it is likely that only one person in ten breathes normally (in other words, doesn’t hyperventilate).

Learning how to breathe normally, that is, to inhale the right amount of oxygen for the optimal health of the body and its various tissues and organs, would seem to be the key to overcoming symptoms of diseases like asthma. Specialists in breathing offer various exercises and techniques to normalize breathing, somewhat akin to yoga, but built upon medical scientific observations rather than upon religious ideology.

Breathing Center for Holistic Health Improvement is the official representation of Clinica Buteyko Moscow, a group that instructs people on the Breathing Normalization method in order to reach optimal levels of personal health. Breathing Center offers various programs online and in person where people learn how to improve their health by reducing or eliminating excessive breathing. This method is based on the ground-breaking findings of K. P. Buteyko, M.D. who discovered that breathing reduction leads to significant improvement in the functioning of immune, nervous, digestive, respiratory and other bodily systems. Visit Breathing Center online at or call for a free consultation at 800-520-3450

Author: Victoria Garcia

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