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Take a MoMint to Breathe

Do you remember the last time you felt overwhelmed or anxious in some sort of stressful situation?

“I have no time to relax” 

This is what most of us tell ourselves nowadays. 

The world is becoming busier than ever. With challenges waiting around every corner, it can be difficult to find the time to breathe and relax. You might find yourself anxious, tense, and stressed. Your mind may be lost in thought, constantly focusing on what needs to be done. It’s such an uncomfortable feeling, yet it happens to all of us. 

What most of us don’t know is that when we’re stressed and overwhelmed, the way we breathe in air actually changes and becomes much more shallow, fast and irregular. Most people don’t even notice this as it happens so subconsciously as a survival instinct as our body prepares itself to fight, flight, or freeze from whatever is causing us stress.

So why is deep-breathing so important?

When we consciously change the rhythm of our breath, we can put our body into a state of relaxation and slow down our heart rate and pull ourselves out of the “fight, flight or freeze” state.

How can I use deep breathing to manage my mental health?

Though there are many different types of deep breathing exercises, in this article, we’ll explore a simple one called the 4-7-8 Method

  1. Begin by relaxing your body. Breath in through your nose and count to 4.
  2. Silently hold your breath for 7 seconds.
  3. Finally, slowly breathe out through your mouth for 8. Release all the air by the end of the exercise. 
  4. Repeat step 1-3 for a few minutes until you feel relaxed.

What else can I do to keep my mental health in check?

Our local Mint Health+Drugs pharmacists are always here to help answer your questions and provide you with the resources you need to feel better. Take a MoMint for yourself, and reach out today!

RESOURCES

  1. https://hbr.org/2020/09/research-why-breathing-is-so-effective-at-reducing-stress 
  2. https://www.healthline.com/health/4-7-8-breathing