How Deep Breathing Can Help Your Recovery

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deep breathing

It’s something we do every day and about a half a billion times over the course of our lifetimes – and yet, you likely take it for granted.

That’s right: breathing. A big inhale followed by a slow and steady inhale is perhaps the simplest way to help control stress and bring more mindfulness to your recovery. This is because conscious breathing can help you better manage the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • Sleep
  • Pain
  • Blood pressure
  • Memory and learning
  • Emotional control

Tips for Better Breathing
It may seem silly to practice breathing – it’s core to survival, after all. But deep breathing, which also
goes by the names of diaphragmatic breathing, abdominal breathing, belly breathing and paced respiration – requires a deeper consciousness.

It’s beyond a shallow chest breath; the air comes through your nose, fills your lungs and the lower belly rises. Give it a try:

  • Find a quiet, comfortable spot and sit or lie down. Breathe normally and pay attention to what it feels like. Now, close your eyes and inhale deeply in through your nose (count to 7) and slowly exhale through your mouth (or nose, if that feels more natural) for a count of 8.
  • Repeat this breathing cycle four more times. By the end, you should complete five deep breaths.
  • Practice once or twice a day, at the same time. This will help enhance the sense of ritual and make it a habit.
  • Once you master deep breathing, consider adding it to a prayer or mantra or to guided imagery to further promote relaxation.

Breathe in the Colorado Air
At NorthStar Transitions, our general wellness programs can help you or someone you love develop healthy habits and routines that you can continue to use long after discharge from treatment. To learn about our addiction services, call today: 303-558-6400.


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