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Feeling Short Of Breath Often? You Should Try These 5 Effective Home Remedies

Feeling Short Of Breath Often? You Should Try These 5 Effective Home Remedies

If you tell your doctor about how easily you might be getting winded – he will probably link your being short of breath to a heart or lung issue, and he’d be right. Being short of breath[1] can be linked to something as simple and commonplace as lung congestion or being overweight, and something as serious as heart disease and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).

It’s a big world of medical procedures and scientific names – and to get to the bottom of your shortness of breath, you’d have to consult a doctor.

However, you can try a few tested and trusted home remedies for this to nudge your sinus cavities open and perhaps even clear the congestion in your respiratory system. Here are a few home remedies and breathing techniques you can try to alleviate the worst of the symptoms.

1. Diaphragmatic Breathing Exercise

Diaphragmatic breathing or abdominal breathing is a technique in which you try and hold the chest steady – letting air in and then expelling it from the abdomen – so as to strengthen the diaphragm for better breathing.[2]

To perform this breathing exercise:

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hic-diaphragmatic-breathing-1

    via Cleveland Clinic

    1. Lie on your back on a flat surface like a bed with your head supported, and knees bent. Place one hand flat on your chest and the other below your ribs on your abdomen – this will help you feel you diaphragm’s movements.

    hic-diaphragmatic-breathing-2

      via Cleveland Clinic

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      2. Breathe in slowly through your nose – making a conscious effort to keep your chest still and letting your abdomen move.

      hic-diaphragmatic-breathing-3

        via Cleveland Clinic

        3. Breathe out normally (or use the pursed lip technique as described below) letting your chest move as little as possible.

        2. Pursed Lips Technique

        The pursed lips technique[3] is another breathing exercise that helps alleviate shortness of breath by improving ventilation and releasing any air bubbles trapped in the lungs. To do this exercise, sit comfortable erect in a chair and relax your neck and shoulder muscles. Breathe in slowly through the nose for two counts, keeping the mouth closed – inhale, one, two. Now purse your lips as if for whistling, and breathe out slowly through the mouth while counting to four – exhale, one, two, three, four.

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        screen-shot-2016-12-01-at-10-22-56-am

          via healthline

          3. Steam Inhalation

          Steam inhalation works best if you are short of breath because of cold, nasal congestion or even chronic lung congestion. Inhaling steam[4] helps thin down the mucus and helps you eliminate it by coughing it up, or blowing your nose. There are plenty steamers available at your local pharmacy that get the job done – they are safe to use since the hot water remains covered.

          If you don’t have a steamer then simply heat water to a boil and put it in a deep bowl, add in some peppermint or eucalyptus oil. Lean in towards the bowl, being careful not to burn your skin from the water or the steam and put a towel on your head to stop the steam for dissipating. Breathe in deeply for a couple of minutes. Repeat once or twice a day.

          4. Have Some Black Coffee

          Coffee is both a mental stimulant as well as a muscle stimulant. Which is why after a cup of strong, black coffee – you feel both refreshed and energized. Caffeine helps reduce any respiratory muscle fatigue and clears the airway marginally too.[5] However, too much of coffee will increase your heart rate and have the opposite effect – stick to one espresso or coffee to alleviate any shortness of breath.

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          5. Go The Ayurveda Way With Fennel

          According to Ayurveda, fennel is an expectorant, as in it helps you to cough up that mucus from your respiratory system faster, thereby clearing your airways and lungs and letting you breathe to your fullest extent. Fennel[6] also has iron and so consuming fennel will help anybody with anemia get to a healthier iron blood level – and help them avoid being short of breath.

          You can dry roast fennel seeds in a pan and then chew it down a spoonful when cool – it leaves a pleasantly sweet aftertaste. Else, add in a spoonful to a cup of hot water and let it steep for 10 minutes. Strain and drink up, once a day – sweetening it with honey if needed.

          Remember to consult a doctor before you try anything in case you are already on medication – and avoid anything you are already allergic to; for an allergy can actually worsen your condition and make you even more short of breath than you were to begin with.

          Reference

          [1] http://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/shortness-of-breath/basics/causes/sym-20050890
          [2] http://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases_conditions/hic_Understanding_COPD/hic_Pulmonary_Rehabilitation_Is_it_for_You/hic_Diaphragmatic_Breathing
          [3] http://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases_conditions/hic_Understanding_COPD/hic_Pulmonary_Rehabilitation_Is_it_for_You/hic_Pursed_Lip_Breathing
          [4] http://www.naturalnews.com/037687_steam_inhalation_respiratory_system_circulation.html
          [5] http://www.healthcentral.com/asthma/c/question/91620/29837/
          [6] http://www.botanical-online.com/naturaltreatmentcough.htm

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          Last Updated on March 13, 2019

          How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

          How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

          Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

          You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

          Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

          1. Work on the small tasks.

          When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

          Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

          2. Take a break from your work desk.

          Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

          Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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          3. Upgrade yourself

          Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

          The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

          4. Talk to a friend.

          Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

          Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

          5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

          If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

          Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

          Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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          6. Paint a vision to work towards.

          If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

          Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

          Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

          7. Read a book (or blog).

          The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

          Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

          Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

          8. Have a quick nap.

          If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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          9. Remember why you are doing this.

          Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

          What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

          10. Find some competition.

          Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

          Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

          11. Go exercise.

          Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

          Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

          As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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          Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

          12. Take a good break.

          Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

          Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

          Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

          Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

          More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

          Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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