Please help !! Constant urge to take a deep breath or yawn for over 10 months!!

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Okay. Short history. I have had health anxiety for about 5 years now. I am a 19 year old male who is otherwise pretty healthy. 10 months agp, around February-March I began having this sensation in my throat/chest area that was only relieved when i was able to get a good deep breath or yawn. The issue is that this breath or yawn isn't always satisfying so I am  constantly taking a deep breath or yawning. I had this issue when I was younger though it went away instantly, this time however it has stuck around and I am in fear that its here to permanently stay. The last 10 months have been absolutely horrible. Some days are better than others, there are times where i don't feel the issue (at the gym, when out with friends). But for the past 3 weeks it has been absolutely unbearable. i feel embarrassed when outside as i think people are often judging my deep breathing. My job requires me to talk on the phone for 6 hours so you can imagine how unbearable this feeling is. I just need advice/help.Anyone out there who has gone through this or is going through it what helps? Will it ever stop? This issue is bringing my spirits very down as i feel that i will be having to deal with this for the restof my life. Please help me get my quality of life back!!

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  • Edited

    hey, is there any progress? its been 6 months since you posted this.

    i have shortness of breath constantly for over a year now too.... it seems as if it just wont get better...

    did u smoke or have any sort of lifestyle that might have brought on the breathing?

    could u also post any progression or any current status on your breathing?

    thank you

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    • Posted

      Like stated in the previous post I made it hasn’t been getting better. It has actually been picking up and getting pretty bad the last 3 or so months. I didn’t think this could get much worse but it has. I’ve been prescribed some SSRI medication but I’m hesitant to take that. My therapist has also advised me to stop doing so much online searching for answers but it’s so hard to do when I have this tightness in my throat that I need answers for. I am trying to live my every day life as normal as possible but it’s so hard to do anything with this. Work has become a burden and school as well as it’s been happening to me in those places now too, even when out with friends, previously it wouldn’t happen but now t does.  From all the readings online I’ve done about this I fear that this is something that’ll be here to stay and I don’t see how I can live a happy life with this holding me down daily. 
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    • Posted

      if it only effects you when u think about it, and u have had all of your tests come back normal, it could be psychological. 

      do u have anything in mind that could make it a physical possibility?

      did you smoke, how old are you, have you had diet problems, have u been exposed to anything bad, and when did u notice this? could it have been sparked by PTSD?

      my situation is consistent and is 24/7. im searching for answers but there are so many possibilities in my case as in i smoked, ate like s**t, was over weight, lifted really heavy weights (powerlifted), im 21 , and i have had a very traumatic life especially when this started...

      if you could possibly feel me in on anything you can think of that might be triggering it, i can definitely help you overcome this. i have helped many people but not myself quite yet, only made mine more manageable.

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    • Posted

      Nope. No triggers really. I never smoked before, I was pretty damm active in the years prior. I’m currently 20 years old, the thing that keeps this going for me is the constantly feeling the tightness in my throat which throws me into full anxious mode
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    • Posted

      When you said, “ throws me into full anxious mode,” that’s exactly what happens to me. As soon as I felt the need to take a deep satisfying breath or yawn I would start getting scared because I knew it wouldn’t work. This made me panic and immediately get an anxiety attack before I even had a chance to take that full breath. Of course, the minute you freak out you won’t be able to take that deep breath/yawn because you’re too nervous! You’re muscles need to be relaxed. The point is, I’m doing much better now that I’m slowly understanding that this is all psychological. There’s nothing physically wrong with me/you but your brain is believing you actually have a problem that is fake. It’s very hard to overcome this mentally but believe me you will. It happens in small steps. Try to resist it when you feel it and tell yourself this isn’t happening. Then do it again little by little. Your brain eventually begins to rehabilitate itself and goes back to normal mode without fearing these fake symptoms anymore. In my opinion, time is the only real medication.  Also, you’ve had this for quite some time correct? If it was really a serious physical problem, something worse would have happened by now. But nothing has other than the increased fear. Hope this helps a little. 😊

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    • Posted

      im so glad im not crazy! i have been dealing with this for a few years now. And it is terryifying because im a smoker! its usually towards the end of the day, i cant seem to get a deep breath, the urge to yawn to satisfy the deep breath is hard because it can take a while before i actually get the deep breath! Then its a craving after you finally reach the deep breath! so for hours im getting a half yawn with no releif and my nose starts to run my eyes water up! Its very hard to ignore when you have that tightness and you think you cant breath! i have also caught myself sleeping and cant get a good breath to the point it feels like im choking. Im in a verbaly abusive relationship and have been in it for 15 years, i believe this is what has triggered my condition. But i could be wrong! Im just happy im not alone, but also sad to know more suffer from this horrible feeling!!

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    • Posted

      And i also have very bad heartburn usually in the middle of the night. I have spit up a yellowish , green acid tasting substance from my chest that burns so bad that it hurts. Maybe you have something with the acid reflux conclusion, it makes sense.

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    • Posted

      hi ive been going through the same thing for a while now! its really annoying and makes me panic if i cant get that deep breathe in! everyone tells me its all in my head, has anything worked for you? i even find myself waking up in the middle of the night doing it, which is making me not sleep good.. 😦

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    • Posted

      Hi Vanessa,

      Yup I had it for a while now. Not quite sure exactly what it is. Could be linked to the brain but just doesn't go away. I have been finally referred to a respiratory doctor which I am going to see in a week's time and see what they can suggest. But previously I had a blood test, ECG, ultrasound on the heart and chest x-rays which came back all with no issue.

      A few things that can help temporary, breathing techniques such as 4-7-8 technique. It helps for it but then you can get back to the nasty habit. Also, keep your mind busy, do not let it think about this breathing pattern, this is hard but try.

      Are you stressed by any chance? Have a change in lifestyle?

      We are all in this fight together, so keep posting and updating people and I will let you know what the doctor says next Friday.

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    • Posted

      Hi denis, how did it go at the doctor? I do notice when im busy i domt do it as much, its the second i start thinking about it i guess, my sons father died of an asthma attack so maybe that could be the cause of it too BUT that was also about 10 years ago, so idk... i do smoke also which makes me very nervous, i have been trying to slow down.. its so hard..

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    • Edited

      Hi Vanessa (and others if they want to read),

      Yes I went to a Respiratory specialist a couple of weeks ago now. I explained to the doctor everything I was feeling and had my notes in front of me to make sure I didn't miss anything. He had all my x-rays and results in front of him. He believes or diagnosed me with Dysfunctional breathing/breathing pattern disorder. He has also mentioned it can be linked to anxiety due to me improving my symptoms when I do breathing exercises. I also do a lot of weight exercises and he has advised me that there might be a link there as this requires me to hold my breath a lot; however, I do not believe that weight training is the case as I have been doing it for 17 years now and had no issues until only a couple of years ago. He did advise me to try and do workouts that are aerobic, i.e. not strenuous but moderate for a long period of time that can keep your heart rate at a constant rate.

      Long story short he was mainly pointing it to be behavioural and all in my head type of gig. He has ordered me to do a full lung function test in the coming month but he believes that it's going to come out as normal from what he is seen at this stage.

      To be honest I have given up on doctors and have been trying to find my own cure.

      I have started doing breath holds which is a common practise for free divers, you can find it on the internet. After doing the exercise you feel a lot better. It basically teaches you to tolerate high amount of CO2.

      I have been doing a lot of meditating, which also helps. There is heaps of applications you can download and they lead you. I do it daily and it helps with mental health and breathing.

      And last but not least, currently trying to cut out caffeine.

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  • Posted

    I had this for years and always put it down to allergies. I developed other symptoms as well though that I thought had nothing to do with this. I had this warm feeling under my rib cage which felt a bit uncomfortable, I then started to get chest pains when I lay down. Then the palpitations started they could go on for hours sometimes. I went into A&E a couple of times it was so bad and was given an ECG and blood tests and told it was anxiety and musculoskeletal pain. I went on ssri antidepressants which help anxiety and it helped with the palpitations and my blood pressure, which was pre high before, but I put on 2 and a half stone in 5 months because I am insulin resistant and the tablets do something to insulin levels. So I came off them and a few months later my symptoms returned. I went onto beta blockers and lived a very unpleasant lifestyle where I just thought I just had to put up with my symptoms because no one found anything wrong with me. It got to the stage where even on the beta blockers my heart was racing, my breathing had become unbearable and I again visited A&E where they did ECG, chest X-ray and blood tests then sent me home and told me to take some Gaviscon on top of the PPI indigestion tablets I was taking and to take paracetamol for my musculoskeletal pain!! Also they told me my breathing was down to anxiety! I realised I wasn’t going to get any help on the NHS because it is a joke so I organised to get myself a private CT scan with contrast. I was immediately diagnosed with multiple pulmonary emboli and put on blood thinners that day. It is lucky I am alive because I have been symptomatic of PEs for years. I got mine from a high risk contraceptive pill but there are many other risk factors. A chest X-ray will only show up a really big PE mine were small but there were loads. If the doctor in A&E had thought to give me a D-dimer blood test when I first went in, I wouldn’t have had to suffer for years and I probably wouldn’t have had so many blood clots. You can tell the difference between anxiety and something serious because I have experienced both.

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