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DEEP BREATHING = BAD .. WHY?? anyone else have this??

Discussion in 'Autonomic, Cardiovascular, and Respiratory' started by alice111, May 4, 2012.

  1. alice111

    alice111

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    I recently had an appointment with a physio to try and build back some strenght as I have been doing a bit better.

    During the exercises she wanted me to do this "deep breathing" where you deep inhale and exhale making a "shhhhh sound". I was concerned about this as I know from past experience if I try to breathe too deeply it drains me instantly, and I ironically I feel MORE short of breath.

    However, at her insistance I tried this method. I started to feel very dizzy, and I told her this. She responded that this was a "good sign" and normal - means that oxygen is circulating. After the session it was clear to me I had made a mistake. I felt uterly EXHAUSTED, drained, short of breath, so that the first time in a long time for me I was unable to talk due to the fatigue.

    I of course know that this is not a good match for my physio - so please no comments on this- I am aware. My question is does anyone else have this experience?? and does anyone know why or what can be done to help???
    I have found in my experience I am able to do a littel bit of light exercise (lying down) so long as my breathing stays shallow, and my heart rate does not go up .. aka avoid anything resembling cardio.

    PLEASE ANY THOUGHTS OR EXPERIENCE WOULD BE APPRECIATED!!
     
  2. mellster

    mellster Marco

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    I think deep breathing when you're OK is a good exercise, but it has been documented that when people experience shortness of breath, anxiety or panic that shallow breathing brings better relief. You can dig up that information on the web I think and bring it to your physio - it always depends on the circumstances, so insisting on deep breathing is nonsense.
     
  3. richvank

    richvank Senior Member

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    Hi, jassysan.

    In ME/CFS, the mitochondria are dysfunctional. This is shown particularly in the published paper of Myhill et al.

    When the mitochondria are dysfunctional, they produce carbon dioxide at a lower rate. Thus, there is a lower rate of flow of carbon dioxide from the cells to the blood.

    The respiratory center in the brain stem tries to maintain the level of CO2 in the blood in the normal range, by adjusting the rate and depth of breathing. Thus, in ME/CFS,
    the breathing tends to be slow and shallow.

    If the person overrides this by intentionally breathing deeply or rapidly, the CO2 level in the blood drops. This will happen in a normal, healthy person also, but they have to do it for a longer time. It's called hyperventilation.

    From this point on, there is a pretty good description of the physiology in the Wikipedia entry entitled "hyperventilation." I think it explains your symptoms.

    What can you do to improve this? Well, the mito dysfunction must be corrected. To do this, one has to lift the partial methylation cycle block, which will allow glutathione to rise. This will overcome the deficiencies in the substances needed by the mitochondria that require methylation for their synthesis, and it will also overcome the oxidative stress, which suppresses mito activity, and will also remove the toxins that have been deposited in the mitochondria and are blocking enzymes there. This is what the methylation protocols (discussed elsewhere on the forums) are designed to do.

    Best regards,

    Rich
     
  4. aquariusgirl

    aquariusgirl Senior Member

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    I am on supplemental home oxygen.. IS this a bad idea if my CO2 is low?
     
  5. richvank

    richvank Senior Member

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    Hi, AQ.

    If you find that it makes you feel better, I think it's fine.

    Dr. Cheney reports that he finds that his patients are "oxygen toxic." By this he means that when he monitors the IVRT on his echocardiograph (a measure of diastolic dysfunction), he finds that if he gives the patient additional oxygen by mask, the diastolic dysfunction worsens. I think his explanation is that when the mitochondria are dysfunctional, giving them more oxygen increases the oxidative stress and slows them down even more, so that the supply of ATP decreases to the heart muscle cells.

    On the other hand, I've read reports from PWMEs who say that more oxygen helps them. Some have even found that hyperbaric oxygen was helpful.

    I don't understand this apparent contradiction. Perhaps some PWMEs have difficulty delivering enough oxygen to their mitochondria. Low total blood volume might contribute to that. Breathing muscles that don't work well could be another cause. As is usually true in ME/CFS, there are several things going on, and the result you get is due to a combination of things, which makes it harder to predict.

    I think that part of the problem is that the general blood circulation serves the entire body, including organs that have mito dysfunction and those that don't. The level of CO2 in the blood represents an average produced by all the organs together. The ones that have mito dysfunction are the skeletal muscles, the heart muscle, the immune cells, some of the endocrine organs, and to some extent, the brain and nervous system. On the other hand, the liver, kidneys, pancreas and some other vital organs are doing relatively fine. Because the skeletal muscles represent such a large fraction of the total cellular mass, they tend to have a big effect on the total CO2 produced. So when they don't put out enough CO2, the breathing gets slowed and shallowed, and that also lowers the oxygen supply. The organs that still need a normal amount of oxygen then suffer. So if you inhale more oxygen, those organs will probably benefit, including the brain. But the heart may actually lower its cardiac output. But if the oxygen percent saturation in the blood goes up, that would tend to compensate for the lower cardiac output. So it's kind of a mixed bag.

    Best regards,

    Rich
     
    Sallysblooms likes this.
  6. aquariusgirl

    aquariusgirl Senior Member

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    Thanks Rich.
     
  7. Asklipia

    Asklipia Senior Member

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    Hi jassysan,
    Yes I used to have this problem with deep breathing and anything resembling cardio.
    There is a thing called "the Bohr effect". To simplify it to the extreme (sorry I am not used to writing scientific stuff, but I am VERY EXPERIENCED in those matters) :
    When you expire for a longer time than you inspire, the ratio of oxygen to carbon dioxide changes in the blood. Changes in pH occur with their consequences. Less oxygen goes around and there is a widening of blood vessels that allow oxygen-carrying cells to reach farther. The oxygen-delivering little ships stop nearer the extremities of the blood vessels. This means actually that oxygen is brought to the skin and the organs in a better way. This is why people who die from carbon dioxide poisoning (suicide in their car with exhaust, suffocated by faulty heaters etc...) have a nice rosy complexion.
    When you inspire for a longer time than you expire (or hyperventilate by forcing the breath), the reverse occurs. You change the ph towards acidosis. More oxygen around means a tightening of blood vessels, the oxygen does not reach so far. You are actually starving the brain (YES !!!) and the organs of oxygen! This is what happens if you have to run for your life : you breathe hard and the oxygen goes to your legs and you starve your brain. Same thing for cardio exercizes. Big problem if you are not in optimal health.

    There is a way to oxygenate better at home, perfectly safely. You should try it for 40 days as it takes a few days to get obvious results. No money involved. I warn you though that you should feel better BUT, unless you are cured of the cause of this CFS/ME, it is temporary. That is, after you have stopped for one week, the benefits may fade. On the other hand, I felt MUCH better when I was doing it. I still do it from time to time just for the pleasure of feeling my brain light up!

    Sit on a hard chair so that your back is as straight as you can (no effort, just do what you can). Put a timer nearby on 11 minutes.
    Choose a string of words that have to be articulated (for example a line of a song with music).
    Take a breath and immediately (no breath retention) sing your line over and over again without taking in any air between the repetitions. No need to shout, but be sure to articulate very well, in an exaggerated way, even making faces. You will find that after a few times you will be able to keep a steady rhythm (let's say sing the line 3/4/5 times depending on the length of your line).
    The aim is to find a number of times which is comfortable, do not make an effort. And to keep it regular after that. Your body knows best.
    When you are out of breath, take another breath in and sing again.

    After a couple of minutes you will find the hormones kicking in : more saliva is the sign (you can swallow no problem). This means the brain is activating the hormonal axis, and not only the saliva but all other fluids are increasing (parasympathetic effect too). This is due to the combination of hitting the palate with the tongue, massaging the thyroid by articulating well, AND the Bohr effect.

    The first times, you may sweat, feel dizzy. If so, stop and lay down for at least 7 minutes. Then start again so that you complete your 11 minutes.
    You may feel pins and needles and lose feeling on parts of your body. That is no problem, just go on.

    When you have done your 11 minutes, stretch your arms over your head and shake them, have a good general shake. Then you MUST lay down for 7 minutes minimum. Even if you do not feel tired. This is when you will feel the hormones circulating in your body. If you are attentive, you will definitely feel something going on. And you will feel when it is done too.

    If you practice and have questions, I am at your disposal.
    Be well!
    Asklipia
     
    Hanna likes this.
  8. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senescent on the Illinois prairie, USA

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    Asklipia, Do you do this exercise just once a day? Does time of day matter?
     
  9. Asklipia

    Asklipia Senior Member

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    Little Bluestem,
    What I forgot to say is that exercise is exactly what jassysan is trying to achieve with lying down with low breath. Only much more effective. MUCH more.

    You can start slowly if you are exhausted. Let's say do 3 minutes the first time, then go up to 5 etc... until you reach the 11 minutes at one go.
    You could start with 4 minutes three times a day to get used to it.
    The point is : something only happens after the body is used to the rhythm and secure in it. You do not get the hormonal effects if you stop at 3 minutes. But if you are too weak to go on, you are still teaching the body to do this, so there is an effect, you ARE regaining ground. If you start with shorter timings, it is a start and you will soon get it right.

    Once you can do it 11 minutes at one go, you can do it several times a day. But not just after eating. Time of day does not otherwise matter.
    This is something you should do every day at least once. Commit yourself for 40 days. If you miss one day, start again counting from day one.
    This is teaching new ways to your brain and body, it is also a kind of training. You will notice it will influence your breath in the rest of the day and the night (then it happens but you don't notice it!). This is a very small thing with very subtle results.

    After a couple of weeks it is a good idea to change the line you are singing. This changes the movements of the jaw and hits of the tongue. I forgot to say : choose a nice line, not something gloomy!

    Good luck!
    Asklipia
     
  10. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1

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    Asklipia sounds interesting.. I just tried it ..only lasted 40 seconds and now dizzy as anything.

    I doubt my actual voice would be able to last out 11 mins of constant singing as the ME has weakened things there (and too much talking.. can mean at times a complete loss of my voice.. like rest of my body.. it can have exertional issues). I think a lot of those with ME will have the same issue.
     
    Wally likes this.
  11. Asklipia

    Asklipia Senior Member

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    Dizzy is a good sign. After a week you will have progressed if you go on. It took me a couple of months before I could reach the 11 minutes, but during those months I had all kinds of other improvements.

    I also had horrible zits appearing at the end of my tongue and below my jaws. I always had since childhood a slight elocution problem that I was told was due to having had braces on my teeth. It went away after that!!!!! I realized that it was a neurological problem. I fixed it when I was 54!!!!! So you see there is hope!

    Don't worry about the voice, you just sing softly, the important part is the measuring of the exhalation and a little vibration, as well as the articulation. You can sing something like "Do Re Mi Fa Sol La Si Do", which is the scale. It can be done in a low soft voice. Do not tire yourself. Just do it day after day. If you can keep a little diary writing the date, the timing and if you noticed something. This helps too.
    Be well!
    Asklipia
     
  12. Little Bluestem

    Little Bluestem Senescent on the Illinois prairie, USA

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    Did the zits appear when you started the breathing exercise? I have a couple of social events to attend in early and mid June. That is a fairly rare thing for me, so I may wait until they are past to begin this.

    I was wondering if it was alright to change the line from time to time. Singing the same line could get pretty boring. I was doing a little experimenting, trying to pick a line. I was trying to use the entire first line of a song. I could only get through those once or twice. It is going to have to be a shorter phrase. I also automatically take a breath at the end of each phrase, but it wasnt difficult to get over that. I seem to be gravitating towards phrases that start and end on the same note, such as:
    Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
    Of the Fathers love begotten
    Theres a bright golden haze on the meadow
    To keep it interesting, I thought about going through My Favorite Things one phrase per day.
     
  13. Gavman

    Gavman Senior Member

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    Unfortunately, physios seem more trained to focus on the specific area that is the problem. Releasing other areas first can be important. If the muscles and tendons are tight and someone keeps breathing hard, its taking alot of energy to get the blood and oxygen flowing. Might want to look for a physio that deals with the whole body or another therapist, or learn to say: NO i cant do that. Ive done it before and it ruins me. You have every right to say no to a therapist. If they aren't listening to their patient at all, they are the wrong match.
     
  14. Asklipia

    Asklipia Senior Member

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    The phrase has to be short at the beginning, so that you can measure more easily 2 or 4 or 5 times.
    The zits are under the skin, it hurts but it does not show, at least this is how it was for me.

    Changing the line from time to time is OK. Do let your body and mind get used to it so it is not an EFFORT!!!!! Even for your mind. This entirely depends on the individual and problems you face.

    What you are trying to achieve :
    - teach your body to do a rhythm of an long exhalation for a short inhalation;
    - vibrate your brain on the sound;
    - effortless and instantaneous switch from sympathetic to parasympathetic;
    - painless and effortless irrigation of the brain and deep organs
    - stimulation of the endocrine glands;
    - spreading of the hormonal products produced.

    Do what you think is best, as long as you do it every day for 40 days.
    Then bring us the results!
    Best wishes,
    Asklipia
     
  15. Quirky

    Quirky

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    I have the same issue as you do. During Qi Gong, I was told to breathe out slowly, with a Haaaaaaa sound, prolonged. It made me very ill, dizzy, and worsened my symptoms.

    Same when I was given oxygen at hospital. I requested for the oxygen
    mast to be removed, and complained it made me worse. Nurses and doctors
    said it was not possible... That was about ten years ago.

    I read recently, in Science daily, that for some of us, oxygen oxidizes and becomes
    a free radical, causing toxicity!! In particular, those who have high level of free radicals.

    I also came across a several articles (books) that specifically advises some type
    of Ki-Kou, Qi Gong, and Yoga breathing!!

    I tried a Ki-Kou breath last year from a Ki-Kou book written by a neurologist.
    It messed up my breathing, taking over four hours to restore to normality.

    Unfortunately, the author didn't not include the contraindications in her book,
    whereas I read about this in another book, specifically mentioning breathing.
     
  16. xrayspex

    xrayspex Senior Member

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    u.s.a.
    Asklipia
    this is intriguing, where did you learn it? Is it something singers use?
     
  17. peggy-sue

    peggy-sue

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    I don't know if this is of any relevance or not, but I used to do yoga regularly before I got ill.

    I was grand with all the breathing that went with the movements - I swam for 18 hours a week as a child - so I have good lung capacity and control of slow breathing.

    Marred just a little bit by my being a smoker.

    I couldn't do the yoga breathing exercises at all - when I was well.

    There was one in particular - alternate nostril breathing (in one nostril, out the other, then reverse it)

    It make me hot and sweaty, it got me horribly agitated and upset.
    I gave up on the breathing and so-called "meditative" bits. I couldn't stand them.

    I liked the exercise and being wonderfully fit though.
     
  18. Quirky

    Quirky

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    Rich: I was diagnosed with alkalosis and metabolic compensation. Wondering if this fits in with mitochondrial dysfunction profile
    (which is evident from the Acumen CFS profile test). Has anyone else tested for this by means of a lung function test?

    Quirky
     
  19. Asklipia

    Asklipia Senior Member

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    This is NOT extra oxygenation (to answer Quirky). It works with extra Carbon dioxide.
    There are three gasses being used in the breath, oxygen, carbon dioxide and nitrogen. The ratio is changing all the time and is very important.
    By changing the first two, you change the importance of the last one. The importance of nitrogen I found crucial when I was ill. There is a link with MS/CFS.

    There is a kind of secret "yoga" used by singers. Yes, this is how I learnt about this. In my country famous singers and theater people learn about this, paying a lot of money for this to old timers who know to train them. Mastery over this gives you mastery over energy, how to perform when tired, how to suck the energy from the public when on stage.

    Really there is nothing more to it than what I have explained. Just do it and you will see.
    If you are a singer, you cannot become a star and famous if you do not know how to do this.
    If you are sick, this is one of the ways to avoid some of the bad sides of your sickness. To carry your life for a while until you find a solution for the problem. To stop deteriorating and to regain strength. Until someone comes up with the cure.

    Be well,
    Asklipia
     
  20. Asklipia

    Asklipia Senior Member

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    peggy-sue,
    Yoga breathing is very powerful. More so of course if you have good lungs! There are more than hundreds of yoga breathing exercises, all of them with precise results. The problem is, if you go to a class, most of the time the instructor has no idea of what the effect of the breathing exercises is, because most yoga traditions keep this secret. There is a good reason for this : since breathing exercises alter the balance of the blood, it is not a good idea to do them if you do not do them EVERY DAY!!!! You cannot do them once a week. Not good. I would even say that it is unsettling and violent for people who have health problems. It has to be REGULAR.

    This is why people like Iyengar do not include pranayama in their normal schedule, even though he personally practices it and wrote a book about it. Not that pranayama (breath control) is not an important part of yoga, but because they know that people coming to classes do not have a regular home practice. Hence, teaching them breathing exercises is not a good idea.

    Alternate nostril breathing is called "nadi shodhna", which means "cleaning of the nadis". The nicer lungs you have, the better it works! I know that most people believe in "energy" and "spiritual" healing etc... But the truth is that all the nadi shodhna exercises are meant to move lymph around and to expel toxins trough the lungs. So if this made you hot and sweaty, it is more than normal, it is the desired effect!!!!! People with chicken lungs only get an effect after 6 months!!! I can tell you this because I swam one kilometer every morning for the first 40 years of my life and my lungs are fine. Any pranayama exercise I do has an extraordinary effect on me. This is what saved me in fact. My fine lungs and my love of my life-companion. I could not walk, but I could still swim and I could still breathe. So i started from there.
    Be well!
    Asklipia
     

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