Pursed lip breathing is a simple technique that promotes slow and effective breathing, and helps control shortness of breath associated with asthma, COPD, exercise, acute exacerbations and increased physical activity or exercise.
Pursed lip breathing can help release the trapped air in the lungs and improve the ventilation of the respiratory tract. The process promotes prolonged inhalation and exhalation, thereby slowing the breathing rate and relieving shortness of breath. This will also help improve the efficiency of breathing and cause general relaxation.
This technique can help you during periods of excessive physical activity such as bending, lifting, walking or jogging. It can help patients with arterial hypercapnia, which involves increased carbon dioxide levels in the lungs due to ventilation-perfusion mismatch. Research studies have also indicated that pursed lip breathing can help manage conditions such as asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, cystic fibrosis and COPD, which cause constriction of respiratory tract and damage of lung tissue. It can also improve your sensitivity to diabetes medications as well.
Pursed lip breathing reduces hyperventilation of the lungs, and causes increased carbon dioxide levels in alveoli. These increased levels dilate the smooth muscles of the airways and improve ventilation-perfusion ratio and oxygen levels in the blood. It can also repair lung damage and lung injury, and promote gradual normalization of breathing in severe cases of respiratory disorders.
Relax your neck and shoulder muscles before starting the process of pursed lip breathing. Your successive steps include:
Many research papers and scientific studies have supported the benefits of pursed lip breathing, especially during acute attacks of breathlessness. The following tips may improve your lip breathing benefits:
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