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between breathing


mental health

The power of breathing


The importance of proper breathing is a topic that’s often overlooked but holds incredible potential to positively impact mental health. Here are some practical breathing exercises that young people can incorporate into their daily routines:


Deep Belly Breathing: Sit/lie down comfortably, one hand on your chest and the other on your abdomen. Inhale deeply through your nose, allowing your abdomen to rise. Exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat for several breaths.

4-7-8 Breathing: Inhale quietly through your nose for a count of 4. Hold your breath for a count of 7. Exhale audibly through your mouth for a count of 8. Repeat this cycle for a few minutes.


Mindful Breathing: Throughout the day, take short breaks to focus on your breath. Pay attention to the sensation of your breath entering and leaving your nostrils. This can help anchor your attention and reduce stress.

Box Breathing: Inhale for a count of 4, hold for 4, exhale for 4, and pause for 4. This pattern forms a “box.” Repeat as needed.

The breath-mind connection

Breathing is one of the most fundamental and automatic functions of our bodies. However, the way we breathe can significantly influence our mental state. Deep, mindful breathing can serve as a powerful tool for managing stress and enhancing mental health.

How can breathing help?

Stress reduction: Young people face a myriad of stressors, from academic pressures to social anxieties. Deep, diaphragmatic breathing activates the body’s relaxation response, reducing the production of stress hormones like cortisol. Regular practice of deep breathing techniques can help young individuals better manage stress.

Anxiety: For those dealing with anxiety or panic disorders, learning controlled breathing techniques can be a game-changer. These techniques can help reduce the intensity and duration of anxiety and panic attacks. Slow, deep breaths can calm the nervous system and provide a sense of control during anxious moments.

Improved focus: Proper breathing improves oxygen flow to the brain, enhancing cognitive function. Young people can benefit from increased focus, better memory, and improved problem-solving abilities when they incorporate mindful breathing into their daily routines.

Emotional regulation: Effective breathing can also help young individuals regulate their emotions. It enables them to step back from emotionally charged situations and respond more thoughtfully, reducing impulsive reactions.

Better sleep quality

Quality sleep is vital for mental health, and controlled breathing can aid in achieving a more restful night’s sleep. Relaxation techniques that involve slow, deep breaths can help calm the mind, making it easier to fall asleep and stay asleep.

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