• over 1 year ago

    Deep breathing every few minutes

    Hey all,

    I dont know how to describe what Im feeling exactly. It's not shortness of breath, but more of a need to take a deep breath every minute or two. I also am experiencing tightness in my shoulder blade area, a stiff neck constantly, and sometimes I get the feeling like my sternum needs to be popped, like my ribs are out of place. Occasionally a pinch on or around my chest, like a band of pain on my side. Have had chest xrays, blood work, EKG, all that has come back negative.

    Now, I should say I have anxiety issues, but honestly sometimes this all goes away and Im fine for a week or so. Sometimes I dont know if anxiety is causing this or if this is causing the anxiety. Then it comes back. Is this just anxiety rearing its ugly head, manifesting in a way I cant seem to stop, or does it sound like something similar? Had BAD anxiety when I was on steroids two weeks ago (doc wanted to prescribe it for the back pain), and when it went away I felt slightly better. But then bam, a few days later the need to take a deep breath every so often came back.

    Is this just muscle tightness, pinched nerve or slipped disc, or is this all anxiety? Next on my list of medical checklists is an MRI, so I am addressing this and not just relying on internet hear say, but would love to know if anyone else has had this and what it might be.

    Also, could this be something else, like asthma or something? How do I even find out?

    Thanks.

Responses

  • over 1 year ago

    RE: Deep breathing every few minutes

    go to the er there is no way an internet forum can diagnose you
      • over 1 year ago
        I can say from experience that is sounds like something I had and still have and it is chronic in my case which is Costochondritis. The ER will work you up for a heart attack, 12 LEads EKG, Chest X-ray, Cardiac enzymes blood panel and after all the test come back normal, the diagnosis will be Costochondritis- Inflammation of the chest wall, sternum, and or cartilage between the ribs. The pain can also be reproduced. Anxiety/panic disorder increaseso your chances of getting it as well as if you have asthma and cough alot as that will irritate it. But still go get it checked.
      • 4 months ago
        I believe it was CostoChondritis. I went to doc and he referred me to a Gastroenterologist. He put me on Omeprazole 40mg for the uncomfortable feeling of tightness and occasional discomfort (even though acid reflux was never a big issue), and then he said that not many of my symptoms sound too much like GERD or Hiatal Hernia, and that it really sounds more like Costo, which apparently you can just get from bad posture or stress! How the hell can my cartilage, ligaments and ribcage become enflamed from stress!? I get that the mind had physical manifestations, but my ribcage? Its like telling me my toe can get sore when Im hungry. I get its all connected, but it just seems so strange how the body can screw with itself so much. Please no lessons on how the mind can affect the body...Im well aware at this point.

        So I feel better, and the deep breathing is DEFINITELY associated with stress and anxiety...and any physical stress on my diaphragm or back, or when I lean sideways in my work chair for hours, as I tend to do. Its like clockwork really. Also I found that eating late then going to sleep also gives me a bad back/pain in my chest the following day, and sleeping is rough and I wake up short of breath at night, so I think its a combination of all small hiatal hernia, GERD, and costo. I found I can pop my sternum occasionally by pressing on it, so that's terrifying, but also indicative of costo.

        Essentially what I keep hearing is if I lose weight, these problems will go away. Im 32, Male, 260 pounds, 5'10". So I would like to drop around 40 or 50lbs. I have to admit, I've been trying to lose some recently and last night I actually skipped dinner cause I just genuinely wasn't hungry, used a wedge pillow for the first half of the night, and went to bed at a reasonable hour, and lo and behold I slept all night and I feel great. This alone is worth the change in diet.
      • 7 days ago
        Thanks for your post. It really was like reading my own mind. I've had several panic attacks as a result of the breathing issues.
  • RE: Deep breathing every few minutes

    Hey, italian31-
    Yes, of course, it's good to get all this checked out medically. But if you get cleared medically, and they suggest that this is anxiety-based, then I can tell you that it is a pretty common experience for folks with anxiety. It goes like this: you FEEL like you are not getting a deep enough breath. You feel kind of an URGE to get that full, deep breath. You FOCUS on your breathing and TRY to get that good full breath. Eventually you can get it and feel relief. That the process begins again a few minutes later. So… If this is anxiety-based… Then your goal is to move your attention away from your breathing, to let yourself feel uncertain as to whether or not you're getting a good full breath, to tolerate the sensation of incompleteness and frustration about not knowing whether you're getting a full breath. It will take a while to train yourself to move your attention away, but stick with it.

    Here's a little experiment you can do: when you are feeling the urge for that deep breath, exhale all the way out. Purposely do not take another breath. Wait, wait, wait. Within 30 seconds or so, you will find that you spontaneously and unconsciously will take that full breath that you are looking for. It is a little way to show you that so much of the strategies we need to use to overcome anxiety are paradoxical; they are opposite of logic. Instead of focusing on trying to get a full breath, you do the opposite, and a full breath comes.
  • 4 months ago

    RE: Deep breathing every few minutes

    Hi! I am feeling exactly what you're feeling. Did you ever find out what is going on?
      • 4 months ago
        I believe it was CostoChondritis. I went to doc and he referred me to a Gastroenterologist. He put me on Omeprazole 40mg for the uncomfortable feeling of tightness and occasional discomfort (even though acid reflux was never a big issue), and then he said that not many of my symptoms sound too much like GERD or Hiatal Hernia, and that it really sounds more like Costo, which apparently you can just get from bad posture or stress! How the hell can my cartilage, ligaments and ribcage become enflamed from stress!? I get that the mind had physical manifestations, but my ribcage? Its like telling me my toe can get sore when Im hungry. I get its all connected, but it just seems so strange how the body can screw with itself so much. Please no lessons on how the mind can affect the body...Im well aware at this point.

        So I feel better, and the deep breathing is DEFINITELY associated with stress and anxiety...and any physical stress on my diaphragm or back, or when I lean sideways in my work chair for hours, as I tend to do. Its like clockwork really. Also I found that eating late then going to sleep also gives me a bad back/pain in my chest the following day, and sleeping is rough and I wake up short of breath at night, so I think its a combination of all small hiatal hernia, GERD, and costo. I found I can pop my sternum occasionally by pressing on it, so that's terrifying, but also indicative of costo.

        Essentially what I keep hearing is if I lose weight, these problems will go away. Im 32, Male, 260 pounds, 5'10". So I would like to drop around 40 or 50lbs. I have to admit, I've been trying to lose some recently and last night I actually skipped dinner cause I just genuinely wasn't hungry, used a wedge pillow for the first half of the night, and went to bed at a reasonable hour, and lo and behold I slept all night and I feel great. This alone is worth the change in diet.
  • 4 months ago

    RE: Deep breathing every few minutes

    Instead of guessing, go to your primary care doctor and ask about symptoms. Steroids will raise anxiety levels and if you have other problems can affect you bodily functions. You might ask you pharmacy how to flush the steroids out of your system faster or have them tell you when their effects are out of your system. It sounds as if something like a massage, yoga or seeing a chiropractor might afford you some comfort and perhaps a way to deal with your anxiety in the further. A lot of things people take as mental disorders are actually physcial problems. Always rule out physical problems before blaming your mind for creating symptoms.
  • 7 days ago

    RE: Deep breathing every few minutes

    Wow, it was like reading my own thoughts. I have exactly the same symptoms. I have been to the doctors at least 20 times and they cant find anything wrong. They say its anxiety and panic attack related. I'm waiting on results for asthma.
  • 1 day ago

    RE: Deep breathing every few minutes

    I know this post is old, but just wanted to reach out and say I have identical symptoms. I mean identical. Hope you are doing well. Nice to know someone out there is going through this too. I am going to try a functional medicine MD and see if that helps. Have had an extensive negative work up in the past too.