Breathing Exercise for Sleep
Use this powerful breathing training tool to help you sleep deeply, soundly and reduce your stress
It has been scientifically proven that in stress states the rate of breathing changes to a shorter exhalation. This limits the release of CO2 from the body, which of course also leads to a lessening of O2. Try to sleep without oxygen and it doesn’t work.
If you lengthen or slow the exhalation (air coming out of your body), you can control your stress state and the flight or fight mechanism. This is probably why Yogi Masters look so calm.
This breathing tool will allow you to synchronize your breathing rate correctly and lower your stress and reducing stress. So the pattern of breathing should be a 5 second breathing in (inhalation) with a 5 second breathing out (exhalation). Make sure you pause for a second at the end of inhalation and exhalation phases. Within a few minutes, you will start to feel more relaxed and saturate your body with more oxygen allowing you to get into sleep faster. You should also try to do this when you are driving or when you go on a walk. It takes practice, so use this tool to train your body to breathe right.
This tool will give you feedback as to the correct pattern of breathing for maximum stress relief. For those doctors who are reading this, go to this link: http://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Article%20folder/Breathing.html
This breathing pattern will induce a parasympathetic improvement of the autonomic nervous system. Use it on your patients to help them reduce stress.
Sleep apnea is really a restricted airway problem with the back of the sinus and throat area. Try to sleep without breathing and you will quick discovery the difficulty. Now the question becomes why? Very few people discuss the why behind this restricted air way other than, “you’re overweight” and you need to go on a diet and use a c-pap mechanism, which provide forced air into your sinus area while you sleep.
Let’s take a look at what controls the muscles of the upper airways in the very back part of the sinuses.
There is a nerve that originates from the very lower part of our brain, called the brain step. It is a part of the 12 cranial nerves. It is number 12, called the Hypoglossal nerve. For more information go here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypoglossal_nerve.
It has been found that atrophy (shrinkage) of this nerve, the hypoglossal nerve is responsible for obstructive air pathways, see http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/238294.php.
So the real question is why? Why does this nerve shrink?
If you research you get the rare underlying causes which include stroke, tumor and injuries. However, there is a more common cause which doesn’t seem to get any attention. It’s high cortisol. Cortisol is an adrenal hormone, which is triggered by stress. Cortisol has the power to even shrink your brain, deprive certain parts of your brain oxygen. Higher levels of cortisol over time, which also means higher sustained stress over time can lead to a shrinkage of parts of the brain and nerves thereby effecting the airways. An atrophied upper airway tends to enlarge obstructing airways.
Another interesting effect of cortisol on the sinus has to do with receptors: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20488636.
Apparently, the mucus membranes are highly sensitive to this steroid cortisol. This is because the connection between cortisol and your immune system. Cortisol lowers your white blood cells (WBCs). And without it, your WBCs can increase causing an overactive immune system called allergies.
Cortisol also inhibits histamines. Histamines are a part of the immune process involved in converting a potential allergen (a harmfully interpreted substance to the body) to a harmless substance. This is why there is a great deal of mucus involved. Your body is trying to protect you and extract this potentially harmful substance out of the body.